The Indiana Supreme Court is seeking comment from the bench, bar and public on several proposed amendments to various Indiana court rules.
It’s all relative: Hoosier attorneys discuss experiences of practicing with family members
They say you shouldn’t mix business and family. But not all Indiana lawyers follow that rule. Indiana Lawyer recently sat down with five sets of family practitioners.Read More
Parties cannot be ordered to participate in alternative dispute resolution in small claims proceedings, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Thursday, reinstating a dog-bite case that an Indianapolis judge had dismissed after litigants refused to participate in court-ordered mediation.
In the field of alternative dispute resolution, diversity appears to be making fewer gains than in the legal profession as a whole. A 2018 article in the ABA Journal reported that, generally, studies show women comprising around 20% of the national ADR field. Similarly, American Bar Association Resolution 105 calls dispute resolution “arguably the least diverse corner of the profession.”
Mediation results in a settlement more than 85% of the time. However, getting to “yes” is hard work — especially for the mediator. While we lawyers do a great job of advocating in mediation, we could do more to make the process more productive, and perhaps improve the likelihood of settlement, by focusing on developing the mediator’s agenda in advance of mediation.
Mediators must always remain independent in resolving disputes between widely disparate views and interests. However, mediators evaluate cases to some degree when facilitating settlement discussions between parties. The mediator must tread lightly when the issue of his or her evaluation is broached by one of the parties.
Three attorneys have left Carmel-based Hollingsworth & Zivitz law firm to start their own partnership, the lawyers announced. The migration of counsel from the family-law focused firm comes after a lawsuit between its founding partners was settled with one partner’s buyout.
A failed mediation attempt has led to court proceedings to dissolve a prominent Indianapolis-area divorce law firm. Kena Hollingsworth of Hollingsworth & Zivitz, P.C., filed a petition for dissolution of her Carmel firm in Kena S. Hollingsworth v. Hollingsworth & Zivitz, P.C., and Christina M. Zivitz, 29D02-1904-PL-003832, writing that a “deadlock” exists between her and partner Christina Zivitz over the management of the firm.
Your client wants to bring a nonparty friend/significant other/family member to mediation, but you worry that the presence of a nonparty will allow opposing counsel access to the substance of your mediation-related communications with your client. Is this worry justified?
Although I’ve been at this law thing for a while and have mediated cases over the last 10 years, I always find value in hearing about the experiences and strategies of others who have accumulated the awareness and wisdom of playing peacemaker on a regular basis.
In the curriculum for business ethics that I teach to students at Butler University’s Lacy School of Business, we cover John Locke and his notion of private property rights – natural rights that existed for each individual in the state of nature. Locke contended that men left that state of nature, in part, because the challenge of enforcing those rights led to a state of war. In more than 30 years of real estate litigation practice, I have seen what often looks like that state of war play out between litigants.
Mediators who work in restorative justice programs around Indiana say the program allows offenders and victims the chance to see each other as human, and perhaps increase accountability and understanding.
In his article, “The Disappearance of Civil Trial in the United States,” Yale Law School professor John H. Langbein explored the factors leading to civil trials having all but “vanished.” He concluded that the largest single cause of the decline in the number of jury trials was the robust and extensive fact discovery promoted, if not mandated, by the adoption of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.
Two companies facing multiple lawsuits over a summer tourist boat accident in Missouri that killed 17 people have invoked an 1851 law that allows vessel owners to try to avoid or limit legal damages as they also seek settlement negotiations with victims’ family members. But Tia Coleman, an Indianapolis woman who survived the accident, and lawyers for others whose family members died denounced the filing as callous and insulting.
Lawyers and judges can now take twice as many hours of continued legal education through online programming per three-year period after the Indiana Supreme Court amended an existing rule to education requirements. Similarly, mediators will not be denied credit for digital programs under an amendment to continuing mediation education requirements.
When parties arrive for mediation and extend their hands in greeting, James Browne understands the cultural differences that can be conveyed in the handshake. Browne, partner at Goodin Abernathy LLP in Indianapolis, has been a registered mediator since 2010 and offers bilingual mediation services.
The IndyBar ADR Section Executive Committee is pleased to announce that we will host our Fall Mediation Day on October 5, 2018, at Barnes & Thornburg LLP. Through Mediation Day, we provide a service to our courts and community by volunteering our time to mediate several screened cases for litigants who qualify for modest means mediation.
The legal portion of the Larry Nassar scandal at USA Gymnastics may soon be over. USA Gymnastics President Kerry Perry said representatives for both the organization and athletes who were abused by Nassar — a former national team doctor who abused hundreds of women under the guise of medical treatment — met last week for mediation talks.
Preparation for mediation is critical. It is as critical as preparing for a trial. Eighty-five to 90 percent of all civil cases settle at mediation or shortly thereafter and well before a jury trial. Therefore, to approach mediation as something that simply will pass and you do all your preparation for trial is a mistake on behalf of your client.
The parents of a northwestern Indiana woman who was fatally shot in 2011 have reached a settlement with an insurance company over damages in connection with the man convicted in her killing.
In the 25 years since Ross Stoddard’s first program on mediation, he has conducted over 4,500 additional mediations. This highlights the growth of the mediation process in Indiana and in all other states.