Indiana Supreme Court Headed to Portage, Indiana!

Indiana Supreme Court Portage, IndianaIn its Traveling Oral Arguments program, the Indiana Supreme Court has selected Portage High School for its oral argument on October 30, 2015.  (See official posting here.)

Oral arguments in a particular case focus on the legal issues surrounding the controversy between the parties, and are usually presented after the case has been fully “briefed”.  (For a detailed description of oral arguments, read more here.)  Oral arguments usually focus on the finer points of each side’s case, and usually require each lawyer to prepare for tens or hundreds of hours to be ready for any question he or she might encounter.  The questions are largely based on what is written in the briefs, but no one knows ahead of time the exact questions that will be asked.  Each justice will have the opportunity to ask questions of each lawyer for each respective side, and each side has a time limit in presenting his or her case.

The details of the case will not be known until shortly before oral arguments are held.  Cases for traveling oral argument are actual cases pending before the Indiana Supreme Court, and the justices will likely take their questions and answers under advisement until several weeks later when a decision will be rendered and published.

This program is an educational program begun by former Chief Justice Randall Shepard, and continued by Chief Justice Loretta Rush.  It focuses on exposure to high school students of the actual legal process in Indiana’s highest court.  The Indiana Court of Appeals (Indiana’s second highest court) has a similar program intent on educating high school students on the oral argument process.

The Porter County Bar Association in concert with the Lake County Bar Association, with the help of the staff of the Indiana Supreme Court were able to coordinate the event as well as other networking and public relations events.