2011 Legislative Review
Editor’s Note: This report is a condensed version of the full report prepared by Diane Mains and Mike McMahon of the Indiana Judicial Center.
The Indiana Judicial Center has prepared a legislative report that contains summaries of select bills of interest passed in the 2011 session and can be can be found at:
The entire text of any law, as well as any other legislative action, is available at:
Procedures in administrative proceedings
S.E.A. 67, P.L. 32-2011
Many changes are made in the laws dealing with administrative proceedings.
Settlement conferences in residential foreclosures
S.E.A. 582, P.L. 170-2011
The statute governing settlement conferences in residential mortgage foreclosure actions does not include a land contract. It also makes other changes in the statute and urges the Legislative Council to assign to the Commission on Courts, or another appropriate committee, the task of studying real estate short sale procedures and specific topics concerning non-judicial mortgage foreclosures. A final report must be issued no later than November 1, 2011.
Disclosure of firearm or ammunition information
S.E.A. 411, P.L. 17-2011
An applicant for employment has a cause of action against a public or private employer asking for disclosure of information concerning gun or ammunition ownership or possession, or if a condition of employment is to forgo the lawful ownership or use of a firearm. A governmental entity may not restrict the possession of a firearm at a person’s residence during a declared emergency.
H.E.A. 1321, P.L. 54-2011
The Uniform Commercial Code pertaining to secured transactions is amended to conform to recommendations made by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws.
Environmental legal action statute of limitations
S.E.A. 346, P.L. 154-2011
This law, along with other changes, sets the statute of limitations for an environmental legal action and an action for a contribution to pay for corrective action related to a release from an underground storage tank.
Recognition of foreign country money judgments
H.E.A. 1548, P.L. 213-2011
The Uniform Foreign Country Money Judgments Recognition Act is adopted, providing a process for recognizing and enforcing money judgments obtained in other nations.
Disinterment of human remains
H.E.A. 1432, P.L. 132-2011
A court may authorize the removal of the remains of a deceased human from a cemetery for certain purposes if the consent of the owner of the cemetery cannot be obtained, or the identity of certain individuals from whom consent is required cannot be determined.
S.E.A. 506, P.L. 164-2011
A person has much broader rights to carry a handgun without a license under the provisions of this law. It also provides that a person who has been convicted of domestic battery may not possess or carry a handgun unless the person’s right to possess a firearm has been restored by a court.
Preemption of local firearm regulation
S.E.A. 292, P.L. 152-2011
This law prohibits, with certain exceptions, a political subdivision from regulating: (1) firearms, ammunition, and firearm accessories; (2) the ownership, possession, carrying, transportation, registration, transfer, and storage of firearms, ammunition, and firearm accessories; and (3) commerce in and taxation of firearms, firearm ammunition, and firearm accessories. A person may file an action against a political subdivision if the person is adversely affected by a local law or regulation.
Purchase of firearms
S.E.A. 94, P.L. 60-2011
It is now a Class C felony for a person to knowingly or intentionally give false information on certain forms or offer false evidence of identity in purchasing or otherwise securing the delivery of a firearm.
Alcoholic beverage matters
S.E.A. 78, P.L. 216-2011
Those selling alcoholic beverages must now ask for ID if the buyer appears to be less than 40 years of age rather than asking everyone.
H.E.A. 1405, P.L. 10-2011
It defines “dissolvable tobacco product” and establishes penalties for the sale and purchase of dissolvable tobacco products involving persons less than 18 years of age.
Sale of ephedrine or pseudoephedrine
S.E.A. 503, P.L. 221-2011
This law defines a “retailer” and sets forth the duties relating to the electronic tracking of ephedrine and pseudoephedrine (PSE).
Substance abuse study
H.E.A. 1502, P.L. 134-2011
The Legislative Council is urged to assign to a study committee the topics of: (1) unlawful ingestion of controlled substances by pregnant women; (2) substance abuse by men; and (3) whether the penalty for unlawful use of a controlled substance should be based on the amount of active ingredient contained in the controlled substance.
Access to child pornography in criminal discovery
S.E.A. 216, P.L. 148-2011
A court may permit, with restrictions, a defendant to inspect, view, and examine material that constitutes child pornography at a state or local court or law enforcement facility if the defendant demonstrates that inspecting, viewing, and examining the material is necessary to the defendant’s defense.
Child molesting and child solicitation study
H.E.A. 1324, P.L. 128-2011
The Legislative Council is urged to assign the topics of child molesting and child solicitation to an existing study committee to study the topic, including whether to elevate the sentences for the offenses under certain circumstances.
S.E.A. 19, P.L. 75-2011
A person commits a Class A misdemeanor by peeping at the private area of an individual and recording an image by means of a camera. The penalty is increased to a Class D felony if the person has a prior conviction or: (1) publishes the image; (2) makes the image available on the Internet; or (3) transmits or disseminates the image to another person.
National fingerprint based criminal history checks
H.E.A. 1318, P.L. 127-2011
Certain individuals with mental illnesses may not possess a firearm, and establishes a procedure to remove this prohibition after the person is released from commitment or has completed treatment.
H.E.A. 1211, P.L. 194-2011
A person charged with a crime may petition a court to restrict disclosure of arrest records related to the arrest if the person: (1) is not prosecuted or if charges against the person are dismissed; (2) is acquitted of all criminal charges; or (3) is convicted of the crime and the conviction is subsequently vacated.
Closed circuit television testimony
H.E.A. 1215, P.L. 28-2011
For purposes of a hearing concerning the admissibility of certain statements or videotapes made by a protected person in a criminal action, the protected person may attend the hearing through the use of closed circuit television.
Conflict of interest
S.E.A. 559, P.L. 110-2011
It specifies certain definitions and defenses that apply to the crime of conflict of interest, a Class D felony.
S.E.A. 262, P.L. 151-2011
A court may appoint two or three competent, disinterested psychiatrists, psychologists or physicians to examine a defendant who raises an incompetency claim; however, one of the appointees must be a psychiatrist or psychologist.
Illegal immigration matters
S.E.A. 590, P.L. 171-2011
Makes various changes concerning the enforcement of federal immigration laws, illegal immigration, and related criminal matters. The Legislative Council is urged to assign to an existing study committee certain topics concerning immigration and consult with the Lieutenant Governor.
S.E.A. 217, P.L. 102-2011
A public servant commits official misconduct, a Class D felony, if the public servant knowingly or intentionally commits a crime in the performance of the public servant’s official duties.
Criminal law study committees
S.E.A. 90, P.L. 98-2011
It relocates the statute establishing the Criminal Law and Sentencing Policy Study Committee, and extends the expiration of the Criminal Code Evaluation Commission until December 31, 2012.
Indiana State Museum and historic sites
H.E.A. 537, P.L. 167-2011
A person who knowingly or intentionally alters, without a permit, historic property located on property owned or leased by the State commits a Class B misdemeanor.
Budget bill [parole; diversion, deferral programs and plea bargaining study]
H.E.A. 1001, P.L. 229-2011
The 24-hour electronic monitoring of certain parolees is subject to the amount appropriated to the Department of Correction for a monitoring program. The Criminal Justice Institute is required to study and report to the Budget Committee by December 1, 2011 on: (1) the use of diversion and deferral programs in Indiana; and (2) the use of plea bargaining in Indiana.
Various criminal matters
H.E.A. 1083, P.L. 180-2011
This law concerns sexting and bullying. It provides defenses to the crimes of disseminating matter that is harmful to minors, child exploitation, and possession of child pornography if a cellular telephone was used and the defendant and recipient of the matter are certain ages and meet other requirements. The Criminal Code Evaluation Commission is required to study certain sex crimes against children during the 2011 interim.
Family and Juvenile Law
Interstate compact for juveniles
S.E.A. 34, P.L. 137-2011
It adopts the interstate compact for juveniles and adds members to the state council for interstate adult offender supervision. The state council for interstate adult offender supervision is also the council for interstate juvenile supervision. An offender and juvenile offender is required to pay a $125 application fee to apply for a transfer out of state and counties must establish a county offender transportation fund.
Prevention programs for at-risk children
H.E.A. 1107, P.L. 183-2011
A juvenile court may create a voluntary preventative program for at-risk children, including appointment of staff , procedures to follow and immunity for certain actions.
Claiming child as dependent for tax purposes [child support]
H.E.A. 1427, P.L. 210-2011
A court must specify in a child support order which parent may claim the child as a dependent for tax purposes, and establishes factors to consider in making a decision. A prosecuting attorney or private attorney who undertakes activities required under Title IV–D is not required to mediate, resolve, or litigate a dispute between the parties relating rights to claim a child as a dependent for tax purposes.
Parental reimbursement for juvenile services
H.E.A. 1316, P.L. 204-2011
The Division of Youth Services Transitional Services Fund (fund) is established to provide juvenile transitional services to delinquent offenders.
Notice to parent, guardian or custodian
H.E.A. 1422, P.L. 131-2011
If a child is named in a written report of a crime and the law enforcement agency that receives the report reasonably believes that the child may be a victim of a crime, the law enforcement agency, subject to certain exceptions, must make a reasonable attempt to notify the parent, guardian or custodian of the child about the report and provide them with certain contact information.
Department of Child Services
S.E.A. 465, P.L. 162-2011
This law makes numerous changes in child services laws including the responsibilities of DCS, probate courts, and juvenile courts.
Release of adoption information
H.E.A. 1201, P.L. 191-2011
Various changes are made to the adoption laws regarding the release of identifying and non-identifying information.
Mandatory retirement age for trial court judges
S.E.A. 463, P.L. 161-2011
It repeals or otherwise removes all provisions that establish a mandatory retirement age for superior court and county court judges.
H.E.A. 1416, P.L. 228-2011
An imprisoned person may earn credit time for successfully completing the requirements for a high school diploma through correspondence courses.
Various provisions concerning courts
H.E.A. 1266, P.L. 201-2011
The expiration date of the Commission on Courts is changed from June 30, 2011, to June 30, 2015. All circuit courts, superior courts, and probate courts have: (1) original and concurrent jurisdiction in all civil cases and in all criminal cases; (2) de novo appellate jurisdiction of appeals from city and town courts; and (3) in Marion County, de novo appellate jurisdiction of appeals from township small claims courts. The law concerning the establishment and operation of county courts is repealed. (Since January 1, 2009, no county court exists in Indiana.) A unified circuit court is established for Clark County, Madison County and Henry County. The four judges of the Lake Superior Court County Division are to be nominated by the Lake County Superior Court Judicial Nominating Commission and appointed by the Governor and subject to the question of retention or rejection by the Lake County electorate every six years. (Current law provides that the judges of the Lake Superior Court County Division are elected every six years.)
H.E.A. 1153, P.L. 187-2011
It expands who is eligible to participate in court established alcohol and drug services programs. Procedures must be followed by a problem solving court to terminate an individual’s participation in a court program. The parent or guardian is financially responsible for service fees and chemical testing expenses assessed against the child by the problem solving court. A city, town or county user fee fund includes problem solving court fees collected by the clerk of the court. A Criminal Law and Sentencing Policy Study Committee is established.
Jurisdiction of university and college police
H.E.A. 1406, P.L. 30-2011
A police officer employed by a college or university may exercise the officer’s police power in any part of Indiana if the college or university adopts a resolution specifically describing the territorial jurisdiction of a police officer, and the board of trustees sends notice to the superintendent of State Police and the sheriff (or chief of police in Indianapolis) of the county in which the institution is primarily located. It requires a police officer employed by a college or university to meet certain training requirements.
Budget bill [court fees and judicial salaries]
H.E.A. 1001, P.L. 229-2011
The Budget Committee may release funds for the judicial technology and automation project after the Division of State Court Administration certifies that the judicial technology automation project is in compliance with the information sharing and exchange provisions of IC 33–24–6–3(a). The automated record keeping fee is reduced to $5.00 after June 30, 2011, and it specifies where the fee is deposited and allocates its distribution. The public defense administration fee is increased from $3.00 to $5.00, and it increases the allocation of state funds to the Public Defense Fund. Funds derived from a deferral program or pretrial diversion program are to be dispersed only by the adoption of an ordinance appropriating the funds by the fiscal body of the city, town or county for one or more of the listed statutory purposes. Judicial salaries may be increased only if approved by the Chief Justice.
Salaries and Benefits
State Deferred Compensation Plan
S.E.A. 521, P.L. 21-2011
If a state employee does not choose another amount, the state shall, in each pay period during the first year the employee is automatically enrolled in the State Deferred Compensation Plan, deduct from the employee’s compensation the greater of the maximum amount of any match provided by the State on behalf of the employee to the plan or one-half percent of the employee’s base salary.
Use of handheld telecommunications device while driving
H.E.A. 1129, P.L. 185-2011
A person who uses a telecommunications device to type, transmit, or read a text message or an electronic mail message while operating a moving motor vehicle commits a Class C infraction. A person may use hands free or voice operated technology to transmit a text message or an electronic mail message, and may call 911 to report an emergency while operating a moving motor vehicle. A police officer may not confiscate a telecommunications device for the purpose of determining compliance or confiscate a telecommunications device and retain it as evidence pending trial for a violation.
Various motor vehicle issues
S.E.A. 528, P.L. 109-2011
An individual must hold a valid operator’s license with a motorcycle endorsement in order to operate a motorcycle. Statutory inconsistencies are removed concerning the ineligibility of a habitual traffic violator for a hardship license. Other changes are made involving proof of financial responsibility and the suspension of driving privileges.
Probate, trusts, and transfer on death transfers
S.E.A. 169, P.L. 36-2011
It makes numerous amendments to existing law concerning transfer of title of certain vehicles, unsupervised estates, powers of personal representatives, transfer of real property, matrimonial trusts, retirement accounts, and other matters.
Uniform Adult Guardianship
H.E.A. 1055, P.L. 178-2011
The Uniform Adult Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Jurisdiction Act is adopted in Indiana, and makes other changes in existing guardianship laws.