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Monday, February 25, 2013

Ind. Courts - New parenting-time guidelines focus on parent cooperation. Update is state’s 1st since 2001"

Rebecca S. Green has a long and useful story in the Feb. 24th Fort Wayne Journal Gazette on the new parenting time guidelines, set to take effect March 1st. Some quotes from the story:

The new guidelines came after years of collecting comments from judges, lawyers, custodial rights advocates, other experts and the public. The 33-page document clears up some murky areas in the old guidelines and put front and center a “spirit of cooperation” between parents and attorneys in carving out what is best for children, according to additions to its preamble. * * *

[T]hey are meant to be guidelines, not a one-size-fits-all solution to child-custody arrangements in divorce or other split-parenting situations.

According to 2010 census data, fewer than half of Indiana households are intact families with a husband and a wife. More than 12 percent are women with no husband present and nearly 6 percent are men with no wife present.

“(The guidelines) are not the same for everybody,” said Suzanne M. Wagner, a Fort Wayne family law attorney with Haller & Colvin.

The new guidelines are also more child-focused, adding provisions outlining children’s basic needs and extra commentary to explain the legal and behavioral reasons behind certain changes, according to the document. * * *

The shift now is to recognize the time parents spend with their children as more than just “visitation” and rather as “parenting.”

There is much more in the story.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on February 25, 2013 10:02 AM
Posted to Indiana Courts