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Indiana Judges Have Large Workload Report Says

In its 2010 judicial service report, Indiana says it needs about 597 judges but only has 441.

Judge

Photo: S. Falkow (Flickr)

The state may not be able to hire more judges because of budget constraints.

Indiana judges are handling the workload of more than one judge according to a report released Tuesday.

The state released its 2010 judicial service report and revealed that Indiana needs about 597 judges but only has 441. This forces judges to work at 135 percent. Chief Justice Randall Shepard says the issue of whether Indiana has enough judges for its caseload matters most to people who need to get into court in a more immediate time frame.

“People who have a divorce or a child custody matter or some need to get injunctive relief,” he says.

Shepard says while the General Assembly has added about a hundred judges over the last 20 years, he does not expect them to find enough money to add more judges right now.

“And that’s why we put so much time in trying to find other ways to be as time-effective as we possibly can,” he says.

Shepard says that includes a program in which retired judges fill in where caseloads are high at reduced hourly rates and caseload plans in each county that even out work between different courts.

Brandon Smith, IPBS

Brandon Smith, IPBS has previously worked as a reporter and anchor for KBIA Radio in Columbia, MO, and at WSPY Radio in Plano, IL as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.

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