Articles Posted in Professional Malpractice & Ethics

by
Petitioner was fired from her job at the Indiana Department of Workforce Development for alleged misconduct. After it was discovered that Petitioner kept several items of state property in her possession, Petitioner was charged with theft. The charges were later dismissed. Thereafter, the State filed an ethics proceeding against Petitioner, alleging that she violated 42 Ind. Admin. Code 1-5-12. After an adjudicative hearing, the Indiana State Ethics Commission found that Petitioner did commit the alleged violation and barred her from future State executive branch employment. The Supreme Court affirmed the Commission’s decision, holding (1) double jeopardy did not bar the proceeding before the Commission, and the criminal court’s probable cause determination was not binding upon the Commission; (2) there was sufficient evidence to support the Commission’s determination; and (3) the sanction imposed in this case was within the Commission’s discretion. View "Ind. State Ethics Comm’n v. Sanchez" on Justia Law

by
After Plaintiff experienced dizziness and difficulty walking, she was admitted into a medical clinic (Clinic) and seen by the on-duty physician (Doctor). Doctor diagnosed Plaintiff with vertigo. Two days later, Plaintiff was unable to move her right arm or leg and was later diagnosed with having suffered a stroke. Defendant subsequently filed a complaint alleging negligence by Doctor and Clinic (collectively, Defendants) for the failure to diagnose a transient stroke. After a jury trial, the trial court entered judgment in favor of Plaintiff in the amount of $1.25 million but denied Plaintiff's motion for prejudgment interest. The court thereafter denied Defendants' motion for a new trial based upon the cumulative effect of Plaintiff's counsel's alleged unprofessional conduct during the trial. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the trial court did not err in (1) denying Defendants' motion for a new trial, despite Plaintiff's counsel's dissatisfying behavior; and (2) denying the discretionary award of prejudgment interest. View "Wisner v. Laney" on Justia Law

by
Plaintiffs Michael Ashby and Randy O'Brien, inmates at the state department of correction, asserted professional malpractice complaints against attorney C. Bruce Davidson to The Bar Plan Mutual Insurance Company, Davidson's professional liability carrier. Bar Plan then intervened in consolidated actions for damages filed on behalf of plaintiffs against Davidson, asserting a cross-claim that it was not obligated to indemnify Davidson for the claims of plaintiffs because Davidson had failed to notify Bar Plan of any claims against him pursuant to Bar Plan's policy. The trial court granted summary judgment to Bar Plan. The Supreme Court held that Davidson's failure to comply with Bar Plan's policy was not dispositive because plaintiffs opposed summary judgment on grounds of waiver and estoppel. The Court then reversed summary judgment, holding that genuine issues of fact remained regarding whether Bar Plan's misrepresentation of valid coverage resulted in plaintiffs sustaining actual detriment. Remanded. View "Ashby v. The Bar Plan Mutual Insurance Co." on Justia Law