Commission on Courts Final Meeting

October 24th, 2005

The final meeting of the Commission on Courts took place on October 20, 2005.

After hearing testimony on the need for additional capacity to keep up with growing workloads in the Indiana Court of Appeals, the Commission approved the final report for the year.

courts

The recommendations included new judicial officers for Marion County, a new court for Jackson County, a reorganization of the Madison County Courts, and a change in the election cycle for the Hendricks County Courts.

We also recommended a clarification of the “garnishee defendant” issue, and the confusion as a result of HB 1113 as to whether a garnishee should be considered a defendant in a civil case.

The Attorney General provided the Commission with a written opinion that concluded:

Based on the garnishee defendant’s role as a “defendant” outside of the original action, the garnishee defendant is named as the holder of wages or funds for the defendant that are subject to claims of the plaintiff. Our preliminary research would indicate that the “garnishee defendant” is not a “judgment defendant” to the original action and therefore the fees assessed to such defendants would not apply to the garnishee.

A formal opinion is due this week. That should help clear up some of the confusion as to whether plaintiffs are charged fees for garnishees – but we will likely try to seek a statutory clarification in the upcoming legislative session.

The final Commission report should eventually be available on the website.

Entry Filed under: Indiana Courts

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