You have made the decision to divorce, and you have carefully researched, selected and hired an attorney, but your friend (a recent divorcee), or your uncle (a contracts attorney), has some input, or you researched different topics on the internet… and you’re starting to second guess your attorney. Divorce, and child issues particularly, can be very emotional subjects. While there are laws out there the guide courts in making decision, there are a lot of legal factors that play into those decisions (or your attorney’s opinion of what a court is likely to decide). Divorce can be a long and arduous ...
December 26, 2014CD
Generally, in civil and criminal cases, you can appeal a final order of the court within thirty (30) days by filing a notice of appeal with the court of appeals, and filing proper service upon certain persons. The Notice of Appeal starts the appellate process. In criminal cases, you can appeal generally two (2) things, the conviction itself, or the sentence, or both. There are many nuances of criminal law and procedure that would lend itself to an argument to appeal either or both a conviction and a sentence. However, if you are convicted of a crime, but believe the conviction ...
December 23, 2014CD
In previous blogs we have discussed what property is considered “marital” property and subject to division between the spouses when they divorce. Generally, all property owned by either spouse before or during the marriage, regardless of who is the account holder or title holder, is “marital” and divided equitably (fairly, usually 50/50). Determining what IS marital property is only the first step towards dividing it up during a divorce action. The second step is to determine the value. The court has discretion to chose any date of valuation between the date of filing (the petition for dissolution of marriage was first ...
December 16, 2014CD
Indiana follows the “marital pot” theory to determine what property is “marital property.” The “marital pot” theory means that ALL assets and liabilities, owned byeither Husband or Wife BEFORE and DURING the marriage, no matter how the property is titled, is jointly owned by the husband and wife equally and collectively. Indiana is unique in that there is no “separate” property, like many states recognize. Other states may consider debts or assets held before the marriage to be “separate” or property acquired during the marriage by inheritance or gift to be “separate.” Separate property is not subject to division, and is ...
December 11, 2014CD
Protective Orders, or POs, are a civil lawsuit used to protect a victim against a harasser or stalker. POs are in the nature of injunctive relief. Essentially, it is a court order prohibiting certain behavior of the harasser or stalker, towards the victim. A PO is NOT a No Contact Order. Popular portrayal in movies and TV shows often indicate that a Protective Order requires someone to stay at least so many feet or yards away from the victim. However, in Indiana, this is not true. Protective Orders can be tailored to the facts and circumstances of the parties involved, ...
December 9, 2014CD
A recent tragedy involved the murder-suicide of a married couple with the husband taking his wife’s life and then his own, leaving behind a 14 year old son1. After several disputes and altercations between the couple, the husband shot his wife in an intersection as she was going to visit a family member just a few blocks away. The wife had filed a protective order that morning, and had called to notify him of her filing. Under Indiana Civil Protective Order Act, the purpose of these laws in Indiana is for the protection and safety of all victims of domestic or ...
December 4, 2014CD
In Indiana, all crimes are statutory. Indiana’s criminal statutes are codified in Title 35 of the Indiana Code, titled “Criminal Law and procedure.” Conduct by a person, however reprehensible, is not a crime, and punishable, unless the Indiana Legislature has exercised its authority to define it as a crime. Because crimes are punishable by a loss of constitutionally protected freedom (i.e. jail and probation), a person must have notice that his or her behavior is criminal. Crimes must be written and published for the general public so that any person has effective notice of what constitutes criminal activity. Each word or phrase ...
November 25, 2014CD
There are two (2) major types of Orders that a court could issue which would prevent contact of some kind with another person. It is important to know the differences to understand your rights, and relief available if the Order is violated, or the punishments/implications for violating an Order. Protective Orders, or POs, are a civil lawsuit used to protect a victim against a harasser or stalker. POs are civil lawsuits, which require an individual person to petition (ask) the court for relief. POs are in the nature of injunctive relief, which stops or seeks to prevent future behavior from occurring ...
November 20, 2014CD
In domestic litigation, therapy and mental health can play a large role in determining child custody and parenting time. In some cases, therapy may be required between the child and parent regarding a number of issues, including addressing past issues or the general parent/child relationship. A recent Court of Appeals case discussed required psychotherapy for a parent, and how it relates to that parent’s ability to have parenting time with the minor Child1. In this case, the parties had one child together, and Mother had 2 children from a previous relationship. There was a history of sexual abuse for both Mother ...
November 18, 2014CD
As the end of summer nears and schools are beginning to prepare for a new year, the question of costs associated with education is often one on the minds of parents. Who will pay for back to school clothes, field trips, and book fees? The answer depends. The Indiana Child Support Rules and Guidelines provide guidance as to some of these fees1. For example, clothing, book fees, and supplies are considered controlled expenses. These expenses are costs that are incurred on behalf of the child, that are not shared or duplicated. The custodial parent (or parent who is designated as the ...
November 4, 2014CD