For many couples, divorce is a long, arduous journey. Finally getting the divorce decree marks the end of the road for a broken relationship and opens the door to a world of new possibilities. That said, the actual divorce decree may still leave many legal details to be attended to or a party is placed in substantial risk in the weeks, months, and even years to come. This blog looks at five mistake that are commonly made when a divorce decree is entered—don’t let this be your case. Designation of Beneficiary Status: A designation of a beneficiary is a person named ...
Tag: Child Support
September 23, 2020CD
In Indiana, a child is considered emancipated at the age of 19 by operation of law. Therefore, emancipation eliminates a parent’s duty to pay child support for the child, and in most cases, a parent’s other support obligations to their children terminates at the age of 19. However, there are key exceptions to this rule that are covered in this blog. “By Operation of Statute.” The first thing to know about emancipation is that, in most cases, it occurs “by operation of statute.” To expand, a child’s emancipation is governed by statutory code. Pursuant to the relevant statutory code section, a ...
September 18, 2020CD
After one party files for divorce, what happens next? By statute, sixty (60) days must pass before the court can enter a divorce decree. A divorce is often a complex financial transaction separating the parties’ assets and an emotional one involving child custody and support. Most divorces take at least a few months to finalize. During this time, many parties cannot agree on who will live in the marital residence, how they will share the children, what car each will drive and who will pay what bills. In these cases, typically one party will move the court to set a ...
August 27, 2020CD
Clearly, with COVID-19 and significant changes in the global supply chain currently impacting most businesses, everyone has had their job put at risk to some degree. This is the case even in great economic times. A simple restructuring of a company may cause a job loss. In this case, many parents paying child support simply do not know what to do. Willful failure to pay support is a contemptible action in court. This blog explores the best practices to follow when you lose your job and/or otherwise cannot pay child support. The best way to start to address this problem is ...
June 11, 2020CD
Yes. No. Maybe. In Indiana, child custody is always modifiable, if modification is in the child’s best interests and there is a substantial change in one (1) or more factors1 the court can consider under the initial custody determination statute, namely (1) the age and sex of the child; (2) the wishes of the child’s parent or parents; (3) the wishes of the child, with more consideration given to the child’s wishes if the child is at least fourteen (14) years of age; (4) the interaction and interrelationship of the child with the child’s parent or parents, the child’s siblings, and ...
June 5, 2020CD
In a civil trial with many issues, such as divorce which may have child support, custody, and property issues decided, a losing party may want to challenge every issue, such as a minimal difference or error in weekly child support to be paid. While there is no express appellate rule prohibiting or limiting the number of issues a party may raise on appeal, raising more than three or four issues on appeal is normally not prudent. This blog explores why limiting the number of issues raised on appeal is practical and prudent. As a threshold matter, a party that raises numerous ...
May 29, 2020CD
Most divorce cases, even those involving complex property issues and hotly contested custody matters resolve at mediation. Those that do not often wind up in final hearings that may go over several non-consecutive days over the expanse of weeks or months. After numerous witnesses, arguments over the admission of exhibits, and cross-examination, most litigants cannot wait to get their divorce decree and order so they can start moving on in life. The question is when should you expect it? This answer to this question is, “it depends”. However, in almost all cases, the court will take the matter “under advisement” ...
May 7, 2020CD
In domestic cases, trial courts are given wide discretion to decide matters initially, such as when the parties divorce or later in child-support and/or physical and/or legal custody modification proceedings. Further, because so much time, emotion, and judicial resources go into domestic cases, Indiana’s appellate court gives trial courts vast leeway to judge the credibility of witnesses when deciding issues.2 Even if the Court of Appeals might have decided the case differently, it defers to domestic courts on how much weight to assign to a witnesses’ credibility. However, the appellate court’s do not defer to the trial court if it applies ...
May 6, 2020CD
In Indiana, divorced parents can1 be ordered to contribute toward their adult child’s college expenses.2 While parents have argued that this violates equal protection, because married couples are free to choose not to contribute toward their children’s college, Indiana appellate courts have rejected this argument.13 In fact, Indiana trial court judges have broad discretion to determine what is included in an educational support order.4 However, parents are not required to contribute toward their child’s graduate degree.5 That said, this blog focuses on a narrow exception when a parent is not required to contribute toward college when his or her child ...
April 21, 2020CD
As a general rule, a party can file for divorce at any time so long as the marriage is irretrievably broken.1 After a divorce is final, a party may move to modify custody at any time but has to show a substantial change in circumstance to prevail. Equally, a party may file a request to modify child support at any time, but evidentiary requirements are different if the support has been modified within a year or after. That said, everyone knows the Coronavirus has crippled most all facets of our society and it impacts the court. This blog explores filing ...
April 13, 2020CD