Sunday, September 29, 2013
Ind. Decisions - More on: Supreme Court vacates transfer grant in Indiana Newspapers
The Indiana Supreme Court has changed its mind and decided not to get involved in a long-running fight over whether The Indianapolis Star must reveal the identity of an anonymous commenter on the newspaper’s website.ILB: An unsettled procedural issue remains unresolved by the Supreme Court's decision not to grant transfer. The Indianapolis Bar Association filed an amicus brief in the case urging "the Indiana Supreme Court to accept transfer and resolve an unsettled question of appellate procedure regarding whether a discovery order compelling a non-party to produce documents or information is appealable as a matter of right." From the conclusion to the brief:
The decision, handed down Friday, lets stand a Marion Superior Court judge’s ruling last year ordering The Star to provide the commenter’s identity.
The Supreme Court did not say why it changed its mind in taking up the case, just one day after hearing oral arguments in the matter.
“After further review ... the Court determined that it should not assume jurisdiction over this appeal,” the one-page order said. * * *
The Star [had] appealed the trial court’s ruling, but the Indiana Court of Appeals dismissed the appeal, saying it lacked jurisdiction.
Litigators and appellate litigators in Indiana are uncertain if orders compelling non-parties to produce documents or information are appealable as of right under the Indiana Rules of Appellate Procedure. This uncertainty is exacerbated by the court of appeals' inconsistent treatment of the issue. In some instances, the randomness of the appellate panel make-up determines whether a non-party can immediately appeal or not. The Court should accept transfer and provide much-needed guidance for the lower courts, lndiana's appellate litigators and their clients.
Posted by Marcia Oddi on September 29, 2013 10:38 AM
Posted to Ind. Sup.Ct. Decisions