Indiana OWI/DUI Information

Better Understanding Indiana OWI Law

A good Indiana OWI Lawyer understands that an arrest for OWI could be one of the most devastating things that have ever happened to you. You need someone who will be there with you to guide and represent your rights through the entire process.

In Indiana a first offense OWI conviction can lead up to one year in Jail. If a child is in the vehicle you could be charged with a felony even on your first offense. After conviction of your first OWI you will be charged will a felony if you are arrested again within 5 years of the first. This could carry up to 3 years in prison.

The Breathalyzer and Indiana’s implied consent law.

IC 9-30-6-1 Chemical test for intoxication; implied consent

Sec. 1.” A person who operates a vehicle impliedly consents to submit to the chemical test provisions of this chapter as a condition of operating a vehicle in Indiana.”

The implied consent only applies to an approved state test (breath, urine, or blood). You must submit to an approved test within three hours of your driving, or your license will be suspended. The implied consent law does not provide penalties for refusing to take any non approved tests, such as “field sobriety tests”. These tests only give the officer probable cause and should be avoided. When being asked to submit to an approved state test, you will not be allowed to consult a Lawyer first. The Officer will explain the ramifications to you of not complying. Always follow the Officers instruction. Don’t give any additional information other than what you are asked.

License Suspension by the Indiana BMV

Tests resulting in a BAC of.08% or greater carry a 180-day license suspension. Test refusal results in a 1-year license suspension; which is admissible in Court.

In many cases an experienced Attorney can challenge breathalyzer results, get license suspensions reduced and get Alcohol offenses off of your driving record, however each case is always different. Contact a licensed Attorney as soon as possible after your arrest to insure your legal and driving rights are protected.

This article provides information about the law designed to help with legal needs. But legal information is not the same as legal advice. You need to be aware that laws are constantly changing. This article is not intended to give legal advise but only information. For the application of law to an individual’s specific circumstances, or for current laws consult a lawyer.

The “Truths” Top Criminal Law Attorneys Wish More People Were Aware Of

1.) Do not retain a criminal law attorney or DUI defense lawyer based upon the attorney’s office location. For many hardworking people, it is simply easier to go to a local criminal law attorney blocks away to make legal decisions that could land you or a loved one in jail and/or affect one’s livelihood forever. While a general practice attorney is often acceptable for non specialty areas such as the drafting of wills, contacts, etc., criminal and drunk driving defense has become a specialized field requiring unique training and attention. For example, most police departments have officers who are trained to do nothing other than pursue drunk driving arrests or drug crimes. As a result, it is often critical that your attorney be one that has devoted himself or herself exclusively to the practice of criminal law or DUI defense with more training in the field than the officer who has arrested you. In an age where most all top criminal or DUI attorneys are accessible for free phone or computer consultations, there is simply no reason not to consult with as many capable criminal defense law attorneys as possible before making the all important decision of who will defend you in a criminal court of law.

2.) Be wary of a fee arrangement that requires you to pay a criminal law attorney or drunk driving attorney base upon an hourly rate. It is often the practice of top criminal attorneys to have a client pay an initial retainer fee for their criminal defense, followed by a detailed fee for services performed beyond the initial retainer fee, or down payment. While not a problem limited to criminal law attorneys or DUI lawyers, a professional paid by the hour has a financial interest in prolonging services for their financial benefit. Within the context of a criminal prosecution, this financial arrangement can too often prove to be a lose situation for an uniformed client. This is so because not only is a client faced with the prospect of limitless and often frivolous professional fees, but also the potential of creating unnecessary conflict between defense counsel and a prosecutor who will often attribute delays in settlement to a client who is punished for the needless actions of a criminal arrest attorney with financial thoughts on his mind not always consistent with an effective criminal defense.

3.) Never speak to law enforcement without a criminal law attorney and be especially proactive in retaining a criminal law or DUI defense lawyer at your earliest opportunity

One who has been arrested for a felony or misdemeanor crime or accused of a criminal offense must always be aware that an arresting officer or detective is not your friend. No matter the kindness and sympathy one in law enforcement may extend to you, the fact that you are a professional, veteran of the armed forces or contributor to the sheriff’s department is not going to legally aid you in providing a legal defense. Only a rookie or inexperienced detective or police officer will yell and scream at one being investigated for a crime. Rather, an effective law enforcement officer is usually trained in the art of gaining a suspect’s trust and in turn the potential for an incriminating statement without the assistance of a capable criminal defense law attorney to protect you. Do not let the truth get in the way of reality. It is an officer’s job to thoroughly scrutinize a statement given in good faith for any possible discrepancies in an effort to incriminate one subjected to a criminal investigation. Once that statement, no matter how innocently intended or misinterpreted has been made, the job of your criminal law attorney has been made infinitely more difficult. If you or a loved one is the target of a criminal investigation and have not given a statement without the presence of your criminal attorney, consider yourself fortunate. You have the benefit of securing the services of a top criminal defense lawyer prior to charging decisions and settlement options being made within a prosecutor’s office.

How To Fill Out and Prepare Quit Claim Deed Form In Indiana

States have different regulations when it comes to quit claim deeds, and an Indiana quit claim deed form is no different. Here’s how to fill out a Quit Claim Deed in Indiana – or mistaken by others as ‘quick claim deed Indiana.’

1. To ensure that you have a form that is 100% in compliance, you can consult with a local attorney or get one directly from the County Recorder. But if you prefer to download a form online, make sure that you get one from a trusted source. Remember, Indiana has different requirements when it comes to the margin, content, and even some of the phrases that need to be in the deed.

2. Once you have the form, start by writing the full names and addresses of the grantors and grantees. The “grantor” is the person who owns the property while the “grantee” is the person receiving the property. Check that the names are consistent throughout the documents. Double-check the spelling as even the slightest discrepancy can be subject to rejection of the deed.

3. Next, give a complete description of the property to be transferred. Include the address and other relevant information such as the area and nature of the property. If you are unsure of what to say, it’s best to consult an attorney.

4. Let everyone sign on top of their printed name. At the bottom of the deed, there are two lines or spaces where the grantee’s address should be entered. You should see a ‘Return deed to’ and ‘Send tax bills to’ fields.

5. As required by Indiana’s regulations, the form should be notarized and recorded in the county where the property is located. It must also be endorsed by the county auditor. Other requirements include the following:

– The quit claim deed must be on white paper.

– The paper must not be larger than these dimensions – 8.5 x 14 inches.

– The content must be typed or computerized.

– The pages must have at least a half-inch margin on all sides.

6. When the deed is accepted for recording, it receives a stamp that bears the date and time of filing and it is filed under public records.

7. There are more than 90 counties in the state of Indiana, from Adams to Whitley. Each of these counties may require certain requirements and tax forms before the Indiana quit claim deed can be accepted for recording. So when in doubt, proceed directly to your County Recorder.

Streamlining the Mediation Preparation Through Family Law Attorneys

When dealing with disputes that involve family law, many people have the mistaken idea that you can engage a family law attorney if you’ll undergo mediation, and vice versa. It’s simply not true. The fact is, when resolving conflicts and protecting your interests in a family law dispute, mediation is just one tool out of many. Just as engaging an attorney to advise you doesn’t preclude you from entering into mediation in order to avoid court, entering into mediation doesn’t mean you shouldn’t hire an attorney to advise you.

In a wide variety of important ways, a family law attorney can assist you with preparing for mediation.

Discovery

With any legal proceeding or dispute, discovery is one of the most important aspects. The discovery process involves the collection and collation of information pertinent to the dispute, and the data collected can have a serious impact on the final result. A clear and up-to-date knowledge of every aspect of the issues you will be deciding is vital whenever one party enters into mediation with another party. A family law attorney will not only have the resources to gather this information, including subpoena powers if they are necessary, but also the experience to collate and present it to you, to the opposing part and to the mediator in a clear and easily understood manner.

Worksheet Completion

A divorce is a complex situation with a lot of moving parts’ that will have a significant impact on the lives of all involved. A family law attorney will have the necessary information on hand to complete a child support obligation worksheet (if necessary) or a marital estate worksheet. There are serious financial problems or even court-imposed penalties when errors on these worksheets are made. And unless you possess the experience and familiarity with them that an attorney brings, these worksheets can be difficult to complete.

Emotional Prep

Finally, a family law attorney has been through the process many times and can give the client a clear concept of the best-case and worst-case scenarios. The whole experience becomes less frightening and more effective when clients have a reasonable and objective idea of what the outcome of mediation could be. When this happens, clients come to terms with those possibilities more easily and enter into the mediation process with a calm, productive attitude.

How to Effectively Use Powers of Attorney in Your Elder Law Plan

Powers of Attorney are key components of any elder law plan. These legal documents provide for someone to make your important decisions when you can no longer make decisions due to incapacity. In many ways, powers of attorney (POAs) can be more important than a will. This article will examine several common types of POAs. We will also look at how to use POAs as part of a well designed elder law plan.

Kinds of Powers of Attorney

Financial (Durable) POA – This legal document provides for others to make decisions about your assets when you can’t. For example, Indiana law provides for a durable POA to deal with real property, tangible personal property, retirement plans, banking transactions, business operations, insurance matters, gifting, litigation, family maintenance, benefits from military service, and estate (probate) issues. Think of this document covering any decision other than healthcare decisions.
Health Care POA – This document is sometimes known, as in Indiana, as Health Care Representative Appointment or health care power of attorney. This permits someone to make your healthcare decisions for you. Most states, like Indiana, require the person making your decisions to try and find out what you want done or not done medically. This is true even if you are incompetent. The idea is that you should never completely lose control of your medical decisions. There will be a duty to try to find out your wishes before anything is decided. The value of this document is that your need medical decisions are not held up while try to figure out who needs to make your decisions. With out this document, you would likely need to have someone appointed guardian over you. This can be time consuming and expensive litigation.

Using Powers of Attorney In Your Elder Law Plan

One of the key uses of POAs is to avoid guardianship or conservatorship proceedings. These legal proceedings can be both costly and time consuming. A properly designed and executed elder law plan plans for when you can’t maker medical and financial decisions while you’re alive. Well drafted powers of attorney provide you with the immediate ability to deal with all of your critical decisions regardless of your capacity to make decisions. Another advantage of the POAs over guardianships, at least in Indiana, is that they can be designed to be very flexible to meet your specific needs. They can be drafted to only be legally valid when you need them and not valid when you don’t.

Durable and healthcare powers of attorney are important and complex legal documents. Don’t be tempted to save money by using generic forms from hospitals, nursing homes, or the internet. Competent legal counsel is needed to make sure the powers of attorney are properly designed and executed as part or your overall elder law plan.

Please don’t wait until it is too late. One of your most important choices is who will make your important decisions when you no longer can. Don’t let the court or others make this critical choice for you. Remember that not every attorney handles estate planning and elder law matters. Ask your attorney if he is a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (naela.org) If you are missing any of these important elements, then consider contacting your elder law attorney to have your estate plan reviewed.

Indiana Supreme Court Releases New Advertising Rules for Personal Injury Attorneys

The Indiana Supreme Court is taking a bold step in stopping abuses associated with Direct Attorney Solicitation of Personal Injury Cases. Prior to approximately 1990, attorneys were not allowed to advertise. This rule was abolished as being a violation of an attorneys first amendment right to freedom of speech. Since that time certain attorneys have taken to sending the families of accident victims direct mail solicitations asking to represent the injured Hoosier in a claim against the party that caused the injuries. The majority of personal injury attorneys found this type of direct contact at best distasteful and at worse a serious harm to the integrity of the profession. The practice smacks of “ambulance chasing” and an attempt to create claims where none would have previously existed. Individuals who were receiving these advertisements were becoming jurors, and their anger at this practice was causing a bias against those who were genuinely injured by the negligence of another.

In response, the Indiana Supreme Court has amended the rules on Attorney conduct regarding direct solicitations. Rule 7.03, of the Rules of Professional Conduct, have been amended to restrict the practice of direct solicitation for 30 days from the date of the injury. The rule, which can be read on the Indiana Supreme Court website, “A lawyer shall not solicit professional employment from a prospective client by in person, or by written, recorded, audio, video, or electronic communication, including the internet if: (3) the solicitation concerns an action for personal injury or wrongful death or otherwise relates to an accident or disaster involving the person to whom the solicitation is addressed or a relative of that person, unless the accident or disaster occurred more than thirty days prior to the initiation of the solicitation.” This rule is scheduled to go into effect January 1, 2011.

The Supreme Court has reasoned that direct contact at a time of significant vulnerability of the injured victim is inconsistent with the professionalism the Court attempts to maintain by and through its rules. Young & Young wholly supports the Indiana Supreme Courts efforts to curb direct Attorney advertising.

Basic Indiana Divorce Information

In Indiana, divorce is governed by Indiana Code 31-15, et seq. The grounds for divorce are (1) Irretrievable breakdown of the marriage, (2) The conviction of either of the parties, subsequent to the marriage, of a felony, (3) Impotence, existing at the time of the marriage, (4) Incurable insanity of either party for a period of at least two (2) years. Because Indiana is a no fault divorce state, most people just state there has been an irretrievable breakdown of the marriage.

At the time of the filing of a petition for dissolution of marriage you must be either a resident of Indiana or stationed at a United States military installation within Indiana for six (6) months immediately preceding the filing of the petition. With some exceptions, at least one of the parties must have been a resident of the county or stationed at a United States military installation within the county where the petition is filed for three (3) months immediately preceding the filing of the petition.

Once a petition for dissolution of marriage is filed, the non-moving party may also file a counter-petition for dissolution of marriage. In most situations the author does not believe a counter-petition is necessary; however, it is common for many attorneys to file a counter-petition.

Once the petition is filed, the parties must wait 60 days before the divorce may be finalized. While the legislature allows a divorce to be finalized 60 days after the petition is filed, it is uncommon for a divorce to be finalized within that time frame. This is due to the nature of the discovery process, the requirement (in some counties) for mediation, the court’s calendar, etc. Therefore, you should not fault your attorney if your divorce is not finalized 60 days after the petition for dissolution is filed.

After a petition for dissolution of marriage is filed, it is common for one (or both) of the parties to request a hearing on provisional orders. This is a hearing in which the court makes a temporary order about who will live in the marital home, who will have primary custody of the children, who will pay child support, who will pay certain debts (mortgage, credit cards, medical bills, etc), who will have temporary custody of certain items of personal property (cars, vacation homes, jewelry, bank accounts, etc). While this list is not exhaustive, you get the idea. This provisional order will govern until it is amended or the divorce is finalized.

After the provisional hearing the attorneys will conduct a process known as discovery. This process can be left open or the court can limit its time period. During the discovery process, the parties are allowed to investigate the assets of the parties, conduct depositions, submit subpoenas to third parties for information, each party’s parenting skills/abilities, and establish a marital balance sheet. During the discovery process it is common for the parties to participate in mediation.

At mediation, a neutral third party (typically another attorney), consults with both parties about how they believe marital assets should be divided, who should have primary custody of the children, determine child support, set a parenting schedule, and resolve any other issues. If mediation is successful at resolving any or all issues the parties will sign a marital settlement agreement (sometimes call a property settlement agreement). Any issues not resolved will be determined by a judge at a final hearing.

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Are You Missing Any of These Important Elements in Your Indiana Elder Law Plan

No one likes to consider his or her own death or disability let alone plan for it. The simple fact is that there will be a point when you can’t make decisions for yourself. Sometimes it is due to a disability during your life. It also happens when you die. It is important that you plan for having your important decisions made when you no longer can.

A properly designed and prepared estate plan provides you with someone you trust to make your important decisions when you can’t. Every estate plan is unique to the person setting up the plan. A good estate planning or elder law attorney can really benefit you by counseling you on what you need and by helping set up your estate plan.

All Indiana estate plans should include, at minimum, these seven important elements:

Important Element #1: A will. Everyone has a will. It’s true. Even if you have never written a will, Indiana had provided one for you. You will find this will, known as the law of intestacy, under Title 29 Article 1 of the Indiana Code. You should read it. You will probably find it is not what you want. Everybody needs a properly drafted will to make sure their decisions are carried out after their death. It doesn’t matter how few assets you have or if you have a trust, you still need a will.

Important Element #2: A durable power of attorney for financial decisions. If you are not able to make your own decisions, then this legal document gives someone else the authority to make financial decisions for you. You get to decide what kinds of decisions are made for you and when a person can start making decisions on your behalf.

Important Element #3: A durable power of attorney for health care decisions. When you can’t communicate what medical procedures you want or don’t want, then this instrument comes into action. You pick someone to make health care decisions for you when you can’t. Indiana law requires that every effort be made to find out what you want done.

Important Element #4: A living will. This document expresses your decisions when you’re terminally ill. The Indiana statute is very narrow. This document only comes into effect if these three conditions exist: (1) I have an incurable injury, disease, or illness; (2) your death will occur within a short time; and (3) the use of life prolonging procedures would serve only to artificially prolong the dying process. Most people are surprised to learn that Indiana’s Living Will statute does not cover comas. This document is most useful to express your desires when used along with the health care power of attorney.

Important Element #5: A trust. Do you need a trust? It depends. There are many kinds of trusts serving many different purposes. Some trusts can minimize taxes while others avoid probate. This is a very technical and ever changing area of the law. The most common kind of trust is the revocable living trust. This trust is set up during your life and all of your assets are transferred to it. You have the ability to make any changes to the trust during your life. If you become unable to make decisions while you are alive, the successor trustee can make them for you. This trust will often avoid guardianships. At your death your assets are distributed exactly as you want without the hassle and expense of probate. These trusts are not for everyone. They take time and effort to set up and maintain properly. If you leave too many assets outside of the trust you may have to go through probate anyway. Your estate planning or elder law attorney can guide you through the process of selecting and setting up any needed trusts.

Important Element #6: A long term care insurance policy. Did you know that 1 of 2 Women and 1 of 3 men over the age of 65 will need nursing home care at some point in their lifetime? Indiana has a very important program called the Indiana Long Term Care Insurance Program (ILTCIP). This program provides participants with the ability to protect their assets from being completely spent on nursing home expenses before qualifying for Medicaid. Long term care is one of the biggest threats to your hard earned assets. This program requires the use of certain long term care policies know as “partnership policies.” Find out more about Indiana Long Term Care Insurance Program. (in.gov/fssa/iltcp)

Important Element #7: Personal Estate Information Organizer. Imagine that you have to take over the decisions for someone else. Where do you start? What needs to be done? Who needs to be contacted? Where is everything? This often neglected but important part of your estate plan meets the needs for someone who must make decisions for you. This document pulls together all of the important information one needs when you can no longer make decisions for yourself. This saves countless hours and hardships for those you love who need to act on your behalf.

Please don’t wait until it is too late. One of your most important choices is who will make your important decisions when you no longer can. Don’t let the court or others make this critical choice for you. Remember that not every attorney handles estate planning and elder law matters. Ask your attorney if he is a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (naela.org) If you are missing any of these important elements, then consider contacting your elder law attorney to have your estate plan reviewed.

Indiana DUI Attorney

Indiana OWI Law

In the state of Indiana, driving a vehicle while under the influence is a crime. The penalties you face as a DUI offender can make your life difficult and attach a stigma to your name because of your new criminal record. The loss of driving privileges accompanying a DUI offense in Indiana can also make it difficult to meet your work and family obligations. With all of the consequences of a DUI offense, the best thing to do would be to avoid driving after consuming alcohol. If you weren’t able to do this, and you have been charged with an OWI, contacting an Indiana DUI attorney can help you to plan your defense and work your way through the legal proceedings as quickly and painlessly as possible.

Indiana OWI Laws

Indiana DUI law makes it possible to be prosecuted in two ways for drunk driving. If your driving ability has been impaired because you consumed alcohol, you can be charged with an OWI offense. In this case, you would be arrested and prosecuted based on your level impairment. Prosecutors may rely on testimony from law enforcement officials who witnessed your appearance and noticed bloodshot eyes or the smell of alcohol on our breath. Dangerous driving habits can also help prosecutors prove a case under the impairment theory. You can also be charged with OWI if chemical testing reveals that your blood alcohol concentration level exceeds the legal limit of 0.08%. In this case, you can be prosecuted based on the chemical testing results, even if officials saw nothing to indicate that you were impaired in any way. Indiana OWI law also allows for penalty enhancements when a person’s blood alcohol concentration level exceeds .15%. If you have been arrested and charged with an OWI offense, hiring an Indiana DUI lawyer can help you to present the best possible defense for your case and minimize the impact of any penalties that are imposed if you are convicted.

Indiana Chemical Testing

Indiana’s OWI laws are rather unique when compared with the DUI laws of other states in terms of chemical testing. In Indiana, the person suspected of driving under the influence has no choice of what chemical test to take. The law enforcement officer on the case can select a blood, urine, or breath test to determine the blood alcohol concentration level in the person’s blood. Indiana drivers who are asked to submit to chemical testing do not have the right to get legal counsel before taking the chemical test chosen by the law enforcement officer. Because of this strict rule, it is imperative that you have a skilled Indiana DUI lawyer by your side when you face your criminal charges and any license suspension proceedings conducted by the Bureau of Motor Vehicles. Having a qualified Indiana DUI attorney can help you to navigate the legal system successfully to win your case or minimize the penalties that you face if a conviction takes place.

Indiana OWI Criminal and Administrative Penalties

The criminal and administrative penalties for OWI in Indiana can include any combination of incarceration, fines, license suspension, and other penalties designed to discourage offenders from accumulating any repeat offenses. When you are arrested for OWI, the arresting officer will confiscate your driver’s license. You can apply for a duplicate license by contacting the Bureau of Motor Vehicles and filing any necessary paperwork. This duplicate license will come in handy if you need to prove your identity and don’t have your original license because it has been confiscated. Once your license has been suspended by the Bureau of Motor Vehicles, then the duplicate license is not valid for driving or identification purposes.

The criminal penalties for driving under the influence increase with each offense. Having prior offenses can make the penalties imposed on you very difficult to comply with and still be able to meet your family and work obligations. First offenses result in probation, fines, payment of court costs, and license suspension. Some courts will require jail time, especially if the offense involved a chemical testing level of .15% or greater. Second offenses may result in jail time, probation, working with a road crew, higher fines, and payment of court costs. A second DUI may be charged as a felony and reduced at a later date. Third DUI offenses can result in a number of stringent consequences. If you have had prior convictions within a 10-year period, you are eligible to be branded with a habitual violator status. If this is the case, you will lose your license for 10 years, face three to nine months in jail, and have a long probation period. You may also have to attend drug and alcohol court.

There are also administrative driver’s license penalties for OWI in Indiana. Failing a chemical test results in a 180 day suspension and refusing to submit to a chemical test results in a one year license suspension. A refusal to take a chemical test also makes you ineligible for receiving any type of hardship permit at any point during your license suspension. Pleading guilty is actually the easiest way to deal with the suspension of your license. A guilty plea often allows offenders to choose a 90-day license suspension with high risk insurance. An offender may also choose a 30-day license suspension, followed by a 180 day probationary period where the only type of driving allowed is for work, medical appointments, or similar situations. You may not have to get the high risk insurance if you choose the probationary period of 180 days. If you want to save your driver’s license, you must file a lawsuit in circuit court and fight to save your driving privileges.

Repeat offenses are penalized depending on the time period and the number of the offense committed. If your most recent conviction was less than five years from your last conviction, the minimum license suspension period is one year. If the conviction is more than five years but less than ten years from the last conviction, the penalty is a 180 day suspension. If your most recent conviction is more than ten years from your last conviction, the minimum suspension period is 90 days. All of these suspension periods are minimums; they may be increased when other circumstances are considered. Having an Indiana DUI attorney on your side in an Indiana OWI case can help you to gather the information you need to beat the charges against you or minimize the penalties imposed if a conviction is obtained against you.

Changes in Indiana Employment Law

Should seasonal workers be allowed to collect unemployment benefits in their downtime? The State of Indiana recently passed legislation precluding seasonal workers from collecting unemployment benefits when they are laid off at the end of the season. See Indiana Code Section 22-4-3-5.

Aside from the political and economical issues with this new change in the law, this article discusses the new statute, provides practical implications, and addresses problematic issues.

Indiana Code Section 22-4-3-5 essentially provides that an employee is not unemployed (and thus not entitled to unemployment benefits) during any time that the Department of Workforce Development finds that the employee (1) is on vacation and (2) has not received compensation from the employer for that week because of either a written contract between the parties or because of the employer’s regular vacation policy and practice.

One of the exceptions to the above rule is that an employee will be entitled to unemployment benefits if the employee had no reasonable assurance from the employer that he or she will have employment available at the start of the following season.

For example, if the employer lays off the seasonal worker in December and tells the worker that there is no guarantee that a job will be available the following spring and that the worker would need to reapply for any job with the employer, then it is arguable that the worker would be entitled to unemployment benefits because there is no reasonable assurance of continued employment.

However, if the employer lays off the seasonal worker and tells the worker that he or she will be called back in the spring if there is employment, and the employer has engaged in the same practice for the past couple of years, then the seasonal worker will probably not be entitled to collect unemployment benefits because there was a reasonable assurance of continued employment.

This new approach seems to conflict with past law. In Fort Wayne Community Schools v. Review Board of the Indiana Employment Security Division, 428 N.E.2d 1379, 1383-1384 (Ind. Ct. App. 1981), the court held that the employee “had, at most, only a hope of being reemployed… [and] [t]his is not enough to constitute a reasonable assurance of continued employment… “.

Nonetheless, the key question that is presented with the new law is whether or not the employee had any reasonable assurance of continued employment when the employer laid the seasonal worker off.

Another exception to the rule is that the rule does not apply to a worker whose employer fails to comply with a department rule or policy regarding the filing of a notice in connection with separation arising from the vacation period. However, this exception is essentially meaningless because the Department of Workforce Development admittedly has no such rule or policy regarding the filing a notice.

In conclusion, just because a seasonal worker collected unemployment benefits in the past when he or she was laid off, does not mean that that same seasonal worker will be entitled to collect unemployment benefits in light of the new law.