Adoption

Court abused discretion in letting public defender withdraw appearance

December 8, 2016
Olivia Covington
An attorney seeking a motion to withdraw appearance had to prove there was justification for his withdrawal and provide sufficient notice to the party he represented before the motion could be granted, the Indiana Court of Appeals found Thursday.
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Marion County judge opens court for National Adoption Day

November 21, 2016
Olivia Covington
As Marion Superior Judge Steven Eichholtz read the order officially transitioning a girl’s grandmother to the new title of adoptive mother, 10-year-old Victoria Kaufman told the judge she couldn’t stop smiling.
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Trial courts plan events to highlight, promote adoption

November 2, 2016
IL Staff
Twenty Indiana trial courts have planned events this month allowing cameras to document the placement of about 160 children with their adoptive parents.
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COA affirms denial of foster parents’ petition for adoption

September 23, 2016
Olivia Covington
A set of foster parents do not have the right to adopt two children without their father’s consent despite the fact that the father does not have visitation with the children, the Indiana Court of Appeals found Friday.
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Justices reinstate father’s parental rights

August 16, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
A trial court’s findings do not “clearly and convincingly support” its decision to terminate a father’s parental rights to his son based on it being in the best interests of the boy. In fact, the findings show that the father and son have a bond and often spend time together, the Indiana Supreme Court found Tuesday.
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Appeals court reverses adoption petition

June 22, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed an adoption petition after it found the adoptive mother did not participate in a sufficient background check and the court should have combined the adoption proceedings with a paternity hearing that was also occurring at the same time.
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COA upholds adoption venue transfer

May 26, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld transfer of an adoption petition from Greene to Monroe County Circuit Court, ruling Monroe was the preferred venue because of other cases related to the petition that also were happening there.
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E-filing extends to confidential cases

May 3, 2016
IL Staff
Indiana courts announced that parties may now file electronically in confidential case types including adoption, child in need of services, termination of parental rights, and juvenile cases. The change took effect Monday.
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High court voids Alabama ruling against lesbian adoption

March 7, 2016
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States ruled Monday that Alabama's top court went too far when it tried to upend a lesbian mother's adoption of her partner's children.
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Adoptee birth-records bill passes

February 22, 2016
Dave Stafford
A bill long sought by Hoosiers adopted between 1941 and 1993 and denied their birth records passed the Indiana General Assembly Monday and heads to the desk of Gov. Mike Pence.
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Adoptee birth records bill advances to full House

February 15, 2016
IL Staff
A House committee voted 11-2 Monday in favor of passage of a bill that would provide thousands of adopted Hoosiers with access to their birth and adoption records.
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Senate passes adoptee birth-records bill

January 21, 2016
Dave Stafford
Advocates for granting Indiana adoptees access to their birth certificates appear on the way to victory this year after years of trying.
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Bill to open adoption records passes Senate committee

January 13, 2016
 Associated Press
A proposal to expand access to sealed adoption records for adoptees is headed to the Indiana Senate floor after winning unanimous approval from a Senate committee.
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Adoption records, gun licensing reform bills to be heard this week

January 11, 2016
Dave Stafford
Hoosier adoptees will make a new push for access to their birth records, beginning with a hearing in the Senate Judiciary Committee Wednesday.
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Judge reaches out to children with annual toy adoptions

January 5, 2016
 Associated Press
Clark Circuit Court No. 4 Judge Vicki Carmichael has hosted the toy adoptions since 2007, taking over the tradition Clark Circuit Court No. 2 Judge Buzz Jacobs started decades ago.
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Indiana adoption advocates to push again to open up records

December 31, 2015
 Associated Press
The leader of an advocacy group for Indiana adoptees says she's optimistic state lawmakers will endorse a bill to expand adoptees' access to sealed records.
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Justices block Alabama court order in lesbian adoption case

December 14, 2015
 Associated Press
The U.S. Supreme Court has sided with a lesbian mother who wants to see her adopted children, blocking an Alabama court's order that declared the adoption invalid.
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Pence designates November as 'adoption awareness' month

November 16, 2015
 Associated Press
Gov. Mike Pence has declared November is Adoption Awareness Month in Indiana. The Republican governor and first lady Karen Pence are hosting an adoption fair at the Statehouse between 4 and 6 p.m. Monday.
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Lawsuit: DCS illegally slashes subsidies if special-needs kids adopted

October 30, 2015
Dave Stafford
A lawsuit filed Thursday claims the Indiana Department of Child Services violated federal law when it proposed to slash assistance for three profoundly disabled children after their grandparents who served as foster parents planned to adopt them.
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Study panel recommends opening adoption records

October 21, 2015
Dave Stafford
A legislative study committee Tuesday recommended opening records to thousands of Hoosiers born before 1994 who cannot access their own birth certificates.
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Study panel to hear proposal to open adoption records

October 19, 2015
Dave Stafford
Whether some 350,000 adopted people born between 1941 and 1993 should be allowed access to their birth certificates – and knowledge of who their biological parents are – will be considered Tuesday by a legislative study panel.
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Adoption affirmed due to biological dad’s lack of communication

September 2, 2015
Dave Stafford
A child’s biological father with a long history of incarceration for crimes including burglary and forgery lost an appeal of the child’s stepfather’s adoption petition.
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Lawmakers to study more time for creditors’ estate claims

August 28, 2015
IL Staff
An Indiana General Assembly panel next week will consider a proposal to extend the time a creditor has to bring a claim against an estate from the current limit of nine months.
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Adoption reversed: Putative father wrongly denied genetic testing

July 8, 2015
Dave Stafford
A child born to a married couple who placed the newborn for adoption may have had a different father, and a trial court erred in denying his requests for genetic testing that could have given him standing to contest the adoption, the Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday.
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Justices strip adoption, reinstate statute COA struck down

June 12, 2015
Dave Stafford
An adoptive maternal grandmother who the Court of Appeals ruled provided care in her grandchildren's best interests despite a 1997 neglect conviction is legally barred from adopting them, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled. Justices also rebuked a COA determination that the statute was unconstitutional as applied.
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  1. Call it unauthorized law if you must, a regulatory wrong, but it was fraud and theft well beyond that, a seeming crime! "In three specific cases, the hearing officer found that Westerfield did little to no work for her clients but only issued a partial refund or no refund at all." That is theft by deception, folks. "In its decision to suspend Westerfield, the Supreme Court noted that she already had a long disciplinary history dating back to 1996 and had previously been suspended in 2004 and indefinitely suspended in 2005. She was reinstated in 2009 after finally giving the commission a response to the grievance for which she was suspended in 2004." WOW -- was the Indiana Supreme Court complicit in her fraud? Talk about being on notice of a real bad actor .... "Further, the justices noted that during her testimony, Westerfield was “disingenuous and evasive” about her relationship with Tope and attempted to distance herself from him. They also wrote that other aggravating factors existed in Westerfield’s case, such as her lack of remorse." WOW, and yet she only got 18 months on the bench, and if she shows up and cries for them in a year and a half, and pays money to JLAP for group therapy ... back in to ride roughshod over hapless clients (or are they "marks") once again! Aint Hoosier lawyering a great money making adventure!!! Just live for the bucks, even if filthy lucre, and come out a-ok. ME on the other hand??? Lifetime banishment for blowing the whistle on unconstitutional governance. Yes, had I ripped off clients or had ANY disciplinary history for doing that I would have fared better, most likely, as that it would have revealed me motivated by Mammon and not Faith. Check it out if you doubt my reading of this, compare and contrast the above 18 months with my lifetime banishment from court, see appendix for Bar Examiners report which the ISC adopted without substantive review: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS

  2. Wow, over a quarter million dollars? That is a a lot of commissary money! Over what time frame? Years I would guess. Anyone ever try to blow the whistle? Probably not, since most Hoosiers who take notice of such things realize that Hoosier whistleblowers are almost always pilloried. If someone did blow the whistle, they were likely fired. The persecution of whistleblowers is a sure sign of far too much government corruption. Details of my own personal experience at the top of Hoosier governance available upon request ... maybe a "fake news" media outlet will have the courage to tell the stories of Hoosier whistleblowers that the "real" Hoosier media (cough) will not deign to touch. (They are part of the problem.)

  3. So if I am reading it right, only if and when African American college students agree to receive checks labeling them as "Negroes" do they receive aid from the UNCF or the Quaker's Educational Fund? In other words, to borrow from the Indiana Appellate Court, "the [nonprofit] supposed to be [their] advocate, refers to [students] in a racially offensive manner. While there is no evidence that [the nonprofits] intended harm to [African American students], the harm was nonetheless inflicted. [Black students are] presented to [academia and future employers] in a racially offensive manner. For these reasons, [such] performance [is] deficient and also prejudice[ial]." Maybe even DEPLORABLE???

  4. I'm the poor soul who spent over 10 years in prison with many many other prisoners trying to kill me for being charged with a sex offense THAT I DID NOT COMMIT i was in jail for a battery charge for helping a friend leave a boyfriend who beat her I've been saying for over 28 years that i did not and would never hurt a child like that mine or anybody's child but NOBODY wants to believe that i might not be guilty of this horrible crime or think that when i say that ALL the paperwork concerning my conviction has strangely DISAPPEARED or even when the long beach judge re-sentenced me over 14 months on a already filed plea bargain out of another districts court then had it filed under a fake name so i could not find while trying to fight my conviction on appeal in a nut shell people are ALWAYS quick to believe the worst about some one well I DID NOT HURT ANY CHILD EVER IN MY LIFE AND HAVE SAID THIS FOR ALMOST 30 YEARS please if anybody can me get some kind of justice it would be greatly appreciated respectfully written wrongly accused Brian Valenti

  5. A high ranking Indiana supreme Court operative caught red handed leading a group using the uber offensive N word! She must denounce or be denounced! (Or not since she is an insider ... rules do not apply to them). Evidence here: http://m.indianacompanies.us/friends-educational-fund-for-negroes.364110.company.v2#top_info

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