Often in domestic litigation, the process is lengthy, and extends over a long period. Domestic cases involving children may last for several months or even years, depending on the age of the children when the case begins. It can be a frustrating and highly emotional experience to be involved in domestic litigation, and often the parties just want to get the matter over and done with.
However, not everything can be done immediately, or sometimes even for several weeks. For example, when filing for dissolution of marriage, there is a required cooling off period. Additionally, when a notice of relocation is filed, there is a period of time for the other party to object. Sometimes, there may be some “hurry up and wait” periods in your family law case.
There are some more real time means to move a case forward. For example, if the parties agree, they may be able to submit an agreement to the Court without the necessity of a hearing. Also, if mediation is scheduled, the parties may resolve all outstanding issues during one day of mediation, again, not requiring a hearing if approved.
Parenting Coordinators are another tool to help with day to day issues, and to avoid having multiple hearings on same. Parenting coordinators work as a neutral between the parties. If there is a parenting time dispute, the parenting coordinator can hear from both sides and make a recommendation. Depending on the level of the parenting coordinator, the decision may be binding on the parties, unless there is an objection through the Court.
So, for example, if the parties cannot determine when the child’s soccer practices will be scheduled or if a midweek can be switched for a week due to conflict, the parenting coordinator can be contacted directly by the parties, review both positions, and issue a recommendation. This process is often much quicker than contacting attorneys, filing a petition with the Court, and getting a hearing set, and may resolve the issue.
We hope that this blog post has been helpful in exploring parenting coordination and how it may be a valuable tool in a domestic matter. This blog is not intended as legal advice. Ciyou & Dixon, P.C. practices throughout the state of Indiana. This post was written by attorney, Jessica Keyes.