Making the decision to pack up and move to another area of the state or another state altogether can be a stressful and difficult one. However, if you add an open family law matter to the mix, things can get even more stressful. So, what information can you help gather for your attorney to assist in your argument for relocation? It varies per case, but here are some general key pieces of information that can assist your case. 1. Parenting Time Plan: When distance is a factor, parenting time can become difficult to schedule. The Indiana Parenting Time Guidelines give minimum suggestions ...
July 1, 2014CD
Often, during divorce or paternity matters, physical custody (who the child lives with) is either divided jointly or one parent is granted custody and the other parent is granted parenting time1. But what about parties who are not parents? Can they get visitation with the child? There are three main categories of parties who can petition the Court for visitation: parents, stepparents, and grandparents2. However, just because one of these persons wishes to have visitation, there are still hurdles to overcome. For example, Grandparent Visitation is governed in Indiana by statute3 and a Grandparent seeking visitation with a child must show ...
December 31, 2013CD
As family law matters progress, one of the first issues to be determined by the parties is parenting time/custody. In some instances, the parties can agree to or are ordered to have joint physical custody. Other times, one parent is granted sole physical custody pursuant to the other parent’s parenting time. Parenting time is often granted, at a minimum, pursuant to the Indiana Parenting Time Guidelines (IPTGs)1. Generally, for older children, this includes midweek parenting time for a few hours and every other weekend for the parent exercising parenting time. The IPTGs are considered a minimum of parenting time, and if ...
October 1, 2013CD
As a general rule, in matters where child custody and child support are at issue, the Court will grant parents joint or sole custody and Order an obligation for child support to be paid. Often, the Indiana Parenting Time Guidelines (IPTG)1 are used as a baseline for determining parenting time for the non-custodial parent. For older children, IPTG parenting time for non-custodial parents is a midweek time and every other weekend. However, as the IPTGs state, they are only a guide/model, and parents should work together to determine the best parenting time division in the best interests of their Children. This ...
July 16, 2013CD
During the course of domestic proceedings, paternity may be at issue. There are, of course, original paternity actions, but paternity may also be at issue for related cases. For example, a third party seeking to modify custody or get a guardianship of a child will need to explore if paternity has been established before filing. So, who can file a paternity action? A mother or expectant mother, a man alleging that he is the child’s biological father or the expectant father of an unborn child, a mother and man alleging he is her child’s biological father, filing jointly, an expectant mother and a man alleging he ...
June 27, 2013CD
In domestic cases, there may be a number of experts that are called upon to testify during a hearing. For example, a doctor may testify about a child’s medical condition, a CPA may testify about the value of a business, or a clinical psychologist may testify about a custody evaluation performed. However, there are limitations to who is an expert and what witnesses can testify about. For example, under Indiana law, a licensed clinical social worker is prohibited from providing expert testimony1. Specifically, the Indiana statute allows that social workers can provide factual testimony (ex. the social worker met with the ...
June 20, 2013CD
In domestic law cases, one aspect of child custody is communication between a parent and child when the other parent has parenting time. Keeping those lines of communication open to allow a child access to both parents via phone, internet, mail or otherwise allows for strong relationships to continue with both parents, despite the child’s physical location. The Indiana Parenting Time Guidelines (herein, IPTG) provide guidance as to communication and ways to keep the lines of communication open1. The IPTGs discuss different types of communication such as communication between parents, telephone communication, mail communication, electronic communication, and emergency communication. All of ...
June 6, 2013CD
In domestic law and litigation, the majority of decisions and findings are based on what is in the best interests of the child(ren)1. For example, in determining initial custody or whether to modify custody, the best interests of the child are paramount and the state statutes defining the elements/information to be reviewed use the language of “best interests”2. But what exactly is the definition of the best interest standard? Put simply, it is truly what is best for the child. However, this is obviously a vague standard that is open to much interpretation. The statutes help break down the standard, and ...
May 28, 2013CD
The newly revised Indiana Parenting Time Guidelines (herein, “IPTGs”) address several issues relating to parenting time in Indiana, and provide clarification for a number of scenarios to help parents best utilize their parenting time schedules. The IPTGs are just that, a guide, and the parties can agree or be ordered to implement a different schedule or parenting time arrangement as necessary. However, in many cases, when an agreement cannot be reached, the IPTGs provide clarification. The IPTGs provide guidance for topics including holidays, school breaks, children of different ages, activities, and many, many more. One topic and question that comes up fairly ...
May 14, 2013CD
When custody and parenting time have been determined in a divorce or paternity action, a parenting time schedule is often put into place. Generally, a standard parenting time schedule when one parent has been granted primary or sole physical custody of a child over the age of three (3) is that the non-custodial parent will receive a midweek visitation (this may be overnight depending on the age of the child and the circumstances of the parents) and every other weekend from Friday evening to Sunday evening1. This schedule is a guideline, and can be adjusted according to what is best for ...
April 25, 2013CD