Indiana Supreme Court issues three opinions from March 6-12

The Indiana Supreme Court issued three opinions from March 6-12. As of March 12, the court issued 11 opinions in 2023—seven fewer than this point a year ago. The three opinions are below: 

  • U.S. Automatic Sprinkler Corp. v. Erie Insurance Exchange, where the court reversed the order of the trial court denying a motion for summary judgment brought by a contractor who was being sued for property damage caused by a sprinkler system. The supreme court held that the contractor was entitled to summary judgment. 
  • Town of Linden v. Birge, where the court “vacated the order of the trial court concluding that a constitutional taking of Landowners’ property occurred from government-induced flooding, holding that whether the flooding’s interference was substantial enough to create a taking was a question left unresolved by the trial court’s findings.”
  • In the Matter of Robert McMahon, where the court found an attorney committed attorney misconduct by possessing child pornography. The court suspended the attorney from practice for at least two years without automatic reinstatement.

From March 6-12, state supreme courts issued 186 opinions nationally. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court issued the most with 41. The court leads in number of opinions issued because it publishes concurring and dissenting opinions separately, and when deciding whether a case can be appealed, the court logs these decisions as standalone, typically single-page, orders. State supreme courts in 16 states issued the fewest with zero. Courts where judges are elected have issued 120 opinions, while courts whose members are appointed have issued 66.

The Indiana Supreme Court is the state’s court of last resort and has five judgeships. The current chief of the court is Loretta H. Rush. The court issued 44 opinions in 2022 and 50 in 2021. Nationally, state supreme courts issued 9,243 opinions in 2022 and 10,133 in 2021. The courts have issued 1,548 opinions in 2023. Courts where judges are elected have issued 985 opinions, while courts whose members are appointed have issued 563. Indiana is a Republican trifecta, meaning Republicans control the governorship and both chambers of the state legislature.

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