Court room proceedings and trials before judges are misunderstood many times by members of the public and compared with certain reality TV court shows. In reality, the courtroom process is a high-emotion place with those who prevail and those who do not. Television and the pressures of trial sometimes obscure the simple reality of a trial: within the bounds of certain laws and trial rules, a trial is aimed at giving a neutral fact finder the information necessary to make a sound, fair legal decision. It is not that much different from going to the doctor, your boss, church or any ...
May 5, 2016Adam Hayes
Making the Factual Showings in Custody Modification Almost every two people hear about a situation and come up with a different opinion. This is because second hand reporting removes the context and non-verbal communication that may be present, such as grimaces, winces, and other body language. Because of this, the Indiana Court of Appeals and Indiana Supreme Court give great deference to trial court judges in custody modification cases. In cases where there is a pure factual dispute, and no question of the application of the law (such as is this the first custody decision or a modification), it is crucial litigants ...
March 24, 2016Adam Hayes
The Doctrine of Unintended or Unknown Consequences Throughout the United States, including Indiana, there is a relatively uniform system in place to allow certain parties in domestic relationships to obtain an ex parte (without notice to the other party) protective order. There is a specific, short time to challenge this order if granted or may stand for up to two years. In daily life, many persons who are served with POs do not challenge them because of the stress and a variety of other reasons. However, you should be aware of a number of unintended or unknown consequences to having a domestic ...
March 8, 2016Adam Hayes
Any party to a divorce, paternity, or the Court may request/order a custody evaluation. A custody evaluation is normally done to request a professional’s opinion on what is in the children’s best interests for custody, parenting time, and/or relocation. At the end of the process, an evaluator will make custody type recommendations to the Court after spending a significant amount of time with the parties. In the event you obtain an unfavorable custody evaluation, there are five important ways you may challenge the recommendations if you believe they are not in the children’s best interests. First, know a custody evaluator’s report and ...
November 3, 2015Adam Hayes
Under the law in the United States, including Indiana, the American Rule is followed regarding legal fees. The American Rule directs, absent agreement or statute or other authority, each side pays his or her own legal fees.1 Nevertheless, within divorce and paternity matters, there are a number of provisions that allow a trial court to award attorneys fees where there is a financial imbalance between the parties, particularly where children are involved. This is likely due to the inherent policy that such litigation is necessary for the court to do its job and determine a child’s best interests. With all appeals, a ...
February 12, 2015CD
The sometimes-bitter litigation between a child’s adoptive parent and her grandparents who raised her from a young age yielded a decision from the state’s highest court that family law experts believe may represent a significant shift in adoption cases...read more on Indiana Lawyer.
January 19, 2015CD