I've placed text but am not able to apply my various paragraphs styles to it. It's like its stuck on Helvetica 8pt. Any ideas? I'm fairly new to ID but haven't had this problem before. I'm using an InDesign file from last year as a starting point since it has all the paragraph styles in it that I want.
Check to see if there is a Character style applied to the text. That would override your parapgraph styles.
You got the answer, but I would just like to mention that sometimes (often) the forum has posts about documents becomming corrupt and is often tied to recycling older documents. I suggest that if it just the styles you want to use from a previous document, that you import the styles from the former document into a new document.
Just a thought.