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Court rejects automatic change in custody for moving mom

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A mother will not automatically lose custody of one of her children if she chooses to relocate to Texas, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Tuesday, reversing in part a trial court order in favor of the child’s presumptive father.

“In this case, the trial court’s order operated to automatically modify custody upon the happening of a future event — Mother’s relocation to Texas. This was error, and we reverse the portion of the trial court’s order that automatically grants Father primary custody of H.M. if Mother relocates to Texas,” Chief Judge Nancy Vaidik wrote in Jacqueline Myers v. Mark Myers, 49A02-1310-DR-895.

Otherwise, the court affirmed a Marion Superior order that found for the father, holding that mother had failed to rebut the presumption that Mark Myer’s was the child’s father, and that she had not met her burden to show relocation was in the child’s best interests.

Jacqueline Myers argued that the dissolution record in which she claimed the daughter was the product of an affair proves that her ex-husband was not the child’s father, therefore his objection to her relocation was invalid. “We are not so convinced,” Vaidik wrote.

She cited Indiana Supreme Court Chief Justice Brent Dickson’s dissent in In re Paternity of I.B., 5 N.E.3d 1160, 1161 (Ind. 2014), in which he cautioned that the court should make no determination of a biological father without DNA evidence. No such conclusive evidence is in the record in Myers v. Myers.

“Absent conclusive, direct, clear, and convincing evidence, and in light of the contradictory dissolution order, we cannot say that the presumption that H.M. is a child of the marriage has been rebutted,” the court held.



 

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  1. He did not have an "unlicensed handgun" in his pocket. Firearms are not licensed in Indiana. He apparently possessed a handgun without a license to carry, but it's not the handgun that is licensed (or registered).

  2. Once again, Indiana's legislature proves how friendly it is to monopolies. This latest bill by Hershman demonstrates the lengths Indiana's representatives are willing to go to put big business's (especially utilities') interests above those of everyday working people. Maassal argues that if the technology (solar) is so good, it will be able to compete on its own. Too bad he doesn't feel the same way about the industries he represents. Instead, he wants to cut the small credit consumers get for using solar in order to "add a 'level of certainty'" to his industry. I haven't heard of or seen such a blatant money-grab by an industry since the days when our federal, state, and local governments were run by the railroad. Senator Hershman's constituents should remember this bill the next time he runs for office, and they should penalize him accordingly.

  3. From his recent appearance on WRTV to this story here, Frank is everywhere. Couldn't happen to a nicer guy, although he should stop using Eric Schnauffer for his 7th Circuit briefs. They're not THAT hard.

  4. They learn our language prior to coming here. My grandparents who came over on the boat, had to learn English and become familiarize with Americas customs and culture. They are in our land now, speak ENGLISH!!

  5. @ Rebecca D Fell, I am very sorry for your loss. I think it gives the family solace and a bit of closure to go to a road side memorial. Those that oppose them probably did not experience the loss of a child or a loved one.

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