ILNews

Court of Appeals orders trial court to re-evaluate child support order

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The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed the part of a custody order modifying child support, finding the trial court miscalculated the mother’s current income and made other errors.

Both Daniel and Tamara Sandlin appealed the modified custody order entered in September 2011. The order modified Daniel Sandlin’s weekday parenting time, described the parties’ financial circumstances, and modified child support.

Daniel Sandlin argued on appeal that the trial court improperly failed to conclude Tamara Sandlin voluntarily left her former job and thus failed to impute income to her; that the court miscalculated her current income; that the court failed to explicitly order that Daniel Sandlin cease paying his ex-wife a clothing allowance for their three children; and that the trial court incorrectly determined the number of overnights for which he should receive parenting time credit toward his child support obligations.

Tamara Sandlin agreed with her ex-husband’s assessment of and challenge to the determination of his parenting time credit and asked the Court of Appeals to make the correction without resorting to remand.

The appellate court ruled that the trial court correctly did not impute income to Tamara Sandlin. Her decision to quit her job and start her own business was not because she wanted to avoid significant child support obligations, but because of a change in job duties and pay at her previous employer, the opinion states.

But the court did fail to calculate her current income based on the evidence and failed to explicitly order that Daniel Sandlin cease paying his ex-wife a clothing allowance. Also, based on the parties’ apparent appellate agreement, Daniel Sandlin’s parenting time credit should be reduced from 181 overnights to 113 overnights.

 

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  1. The child support award is many times what the custodial parent earns, and exceeds the actual costs of providing for the children's needs. My fiance and I have agreed that if we divorce, that the children will be provided for using a shared checking account like this one(http://www.mediate.com/articles/if_they_can_do_parenting_plans.cfm) to avoid the hidden alimony in Indiana's child support guidelines.

  2. Fiat justitia ruat caelum is a Latin legal phrase, meaning "Let justice be done though the heavens fall." The maxim signifies the belief that justice must be realized regardless of consequences.

  3. Indiana up holds this behavior. the state police know they got it made.

  4. Additional Points: -Civility in the profession: Treating others with respect will not only move others to respect you, it will show a shared respect for the legal system we are all sworn to protect. When attorneys engage in unnecessary personal attacks, they lose the respect and favor of judges, jurors, the person being attacked, and others witnessing or reading the communication. It's not always easy to put anger aside, but if you don't, you will lose respect, credibility, cases, clients & jobs or job opportunities. -Read Rule 22 of the Admission & Discipline Rules. Capture that spirit and apply those principles in your daily work. -Strive to represent clients in a manner that communicates the importance you place on the legal matter you're privileged to handle for them. -There are good lawyers of all ages, but no one is perfect. Older lawyers can learn valuable skills from younger lawyers who tend to be more adept with new technologies that can improve work quality and speed. Older lawyers have already tackled more legal issues and worked through more of the problems encountered when representing clients on various types of legal matters. If there's mutual respect and a willingness to learn from each other, it will help make both attorneys better lawyers. -Erosion of the public trust in lawyers wears down public confidence in the rule of law. Always keep your duty to the profession in mind. -You can learn so much by asking questions & actively listening to instructions and advice from more experienced attorneys, regardless of how many years or decades you've each practiced law. Don't miss out on that chance.

  5. Agreed on 4th Amendment call - that was just bad policing that resulted in dismissal for repeat offender. What kind of parent names their boy "Kriston"?

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