General Information

March 5, 2015 | Category: General

This is the ninth weekly installment of the Legislative Update for the 2015 legislative session. If you are interested in reading the text of any bill introduced this session, you may find all of the bill information here.

This week the Senate and House committees heard the following bills of interest to the judiciary:

Family & Juvenile Law

March 5, 2015 | Category: Family/Juvenile

The Senate Judiciary Committee heard HB 1304 on various criminal law issues, sponsored by Sen. Steele. Fifteen testified on the the legislation including Judge Mary Willis, President, Indiana Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges and Linda Brady, President, Probation Officers Professional Association of Indiana. Judge Willis focused on potential use of restraints for juveniles in limited cases and the need for safety when juveniles are in the courtroom. She also discussed the need for data before making the proposed changes to the ages for presumptive and nonpresumptive waiver of juveniles. Linda Brady supported the increase in treatment options for adults with mental health issues in the legislation. Other speakers discussed the recording custodial interrogations of juveniles, the confusion with the use of the term CASA for representatives in mental health cases, credit time in certain cases and other areas.  The bill was held for the Committee’s next meeting.

Judicial Administration

March 5, 2015 | Category: Administration

The Senate Judiciary Committee heard HB 1141, sponsored by Sen. Steele, on judgment dockets. This bill specifies that the clerk of a circuit court shall keep a judgment docket for the circuit court and for each superior court and probate court served by the clerk, and that the clerk is the official keeper of the judgment docket for the circuit court and for each superior court and probate court served by the clerk. It also provides that a judgment docket may not include judgments in which the state, a county, or another governmental entity is the sole creditor, except for cases in which the state obtains a judgment for unpaid taxes, or any entry that is required by statute. This bill is meant to clarify that criminal court costs are not included on the judgment docket. The bill passed 6-0.

The Senate Judiciary Committee heard HB 1307, sponsored by Sen. Niemeyer and Sen. Randolph, increasing the maximum civil jurisdiction from an amount in controversy of $3,000 to an amount in controversy of $6,000 for Lake County city and town court jurisdiction in East Chicago, Gary, Hammond, Hobart, and Crown Point city courts, and Merrillville town court. The bill was amended to specify that money from the jury pay fund may be used by a city or town court to supplement the cost of jury fees. The amended bill passed 7-0.