In polling a room full of people who have experienced divorce, some will contend their ex-spouse is "crazy". Part of this is gallows humor and a way to cope with this past or present stressor; there are those for whom the situation will be a reality. This blog post addresses divorce and mental health statistics means to obtain a diagnosis or assessment under the law, and key implications for the divorcing parties. First, divorce itself is now recognized as a traumatic experience and possible ...
Clearly, natural and adoptive parents have a fundamental right to raise their children.1 However, given these constraints, the Indiana Courts have four important tools by statues and one by caselaw to utilize to assist third parties to obtain “custody” of children where their well-being depends on it. The reality in the United States is that millions and millions of children are primarily raised by people other than their parents, mostly by grandparents and relatives. Millions more are raised for periods of ...
March 9, 2017 / Civil Law
Maybe and Maybe Not! Criminal prosecution and defense, as with the rest of law and society, has become complex. Thus, even routine criminal cases should be pair an accused with an informed and skilled defense counsel. The Indiana Supreme Court’s recent case on Miranda warning in a field sobriety checkpoint reflects this need. Typically, during any police detainment of any duration and questioning, Miranda warnings apply. However, in State v. Brown, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled consistently with ...
Three Key Defenses to Return of Children to Their County of Residence Under The Hague Convention And Other Remedies
March 8, 2017 / Child Kidnapping by Parents
Many countries are signatories to the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of Child Abduction1; and the treaty has been ratified between these countries. When this is the case, a child wrongfully removed from his or her country of habitual residence may be subject to proceedings to return proceedings, generally brought in the country where they have been taken. However, while there are always circumstances relevant to removal, a few constitute legal, affirmative defenses that will allow the judicial or ...
March 7, 2017 / Restoration of Rights
A controversial topic nationally is the prohibition on individuals convicted of battery with a domestic component. For defendants, it is unique because it is the only misdemeanor crime where an individual is disqualified under federal law from possessing firearms. This disqualifier also prohibits any person in Indiana from being issued a License to Carry a Firearm. Generally, the notion behind these bars is domestic violence is more serious than other crimes because it tears at the social fabric of ...
Fortunately, Indiana has a strong and growing economy with little debt. For this reason, along with its central location, many marital estates are in excess of one million dollars. Divorcing parties in this situation are fortunate in that they likely have enough money to properly account for the basic cost of a divorce which is a complex legal transaction (including tax issues, determining finances through a financial declaration, attending a parenting class, and valuing and dividing assets that were often not contemplated to ...
March 2, 2017 / Protective Order
Through cases and statutes, criminal and civil trial courts have an array of tools under the general umbrella term of protective orders to assist with due process and justice—to protect people and property from injury or harm to their case. This blog explores four common types and their uses. The first is a “no contact order”. They typically are a term of release when one person has injured another or threatened such and may extend to victims and witnesses. How these ...
What If the State Fails to Allege and Prove the Passage of Statutory Time Requirements to Terminate a Parent’s Right to His or Her Children
February 22, 2017 / Parental Rights
The point of a civil or criminal trial—overall--is to ensure substantive and procedural due process and protection of fundamental and key constitutional principles. However, no trial court is infallible and most trials do not occur without legal errors being made. This is why some errors may be deemed “harmless” and not afford a new trial or reversal. Stated differently, this means that unless a given error ...
February 21, 2017 / Custody Modification
Indiana’s elected judges are tasked with the important job of weighing the evidence of the parties’ positions when presented with a custody modification case or contempt of court for a wide range of circumstances, such parenting time interference. In a recent key dissent (from granting transfer [i.e., taking the case by its discretion]), the Indiana Supreme Court1 signaled that when the facts can support but one conclusion—a parent has intentionally interfered with parenting time--such continual interference itself can ...
February 20, 2017 / Indiana Handgun Permit
Hundreds of thousands of Hoosiers have a License to Carry Handgun, commonly known as a “permit” issued by the Indiana State Police. With application and the complexities of the law, there are many reasons an application may be denied and appealed. In many cases, a denial—properly addressed—can be remedied on appeal. This blog explores common reasons for denial and how an attorney may assist you in the process. The first is a misstatement on the Application. Law and life are complex ...