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Mother should have used Admin. Rule 9 in attempt to change name anonymously

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The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld the denial of a mother’s request to sidestep the notice requirements in her quest to change her name and the names of her two children anonymously because she wanted to avoid detection from her abusive partner. The appeals court noted that Administrative Rule 9 would have given her the opportunity to proceed anonymously.

Mother Jane Doe fled Missouri to Indiana in an attempt to escape horrible physical and sexual abuse from the father of her youngest child, Baby Doe. She also has another child, referred to as Mary Doe in the court record. Despite protection orders obtained against the father by Doe and the domestic violence shelter where she resided, the father was able to locate her and abduct her twice. His whereabouts are currently unknown.

In an attempt to escape the abuse and prevent the father from finding information about her, Doe petitioned to change the names of herself and her two children. She wants to sidestep I.C. 34-28-2-3, which requires all name change petitions published in a nearby newspaper, and proceed anonymously. The trial court suggested utilizing Administrative Rule 9 to admit important information into the record while still protecting their identities, but that rule was not used. As a result, the trial court denied the petition.

“Because the Appellants did not utilize the procedures outlined in Rule 9, the outcome of such proceedings is conjecture. Nevertheless, it is fairly likely that some, if not much of their evidence concerning the protective orders, domestic violence, and DCS proceedings, would have been protected from public access under Rule 9,” Judge John Baker wrote in In Re: the Name Change of Jane Doe, Petitioner, Mary Doe, a Minor, and Baby Doe, a Minor, 49A02-1211-MI-894.

“And while Mother’s desire to change her and her children’s name would have indeed proved more difficult in the absence of publication, Rule 9(H) may have provided the relief and protection that Mother so desperately seeks. To be sure, the Commentary to Rule 9(A) speaks volumes: ‘there are times when access to information may lead to, or increase the risk of, harm to individuals.’ However, that said, in light of the record with which we are presented and the current state of the law, we are compelled to uphold the trial court’s denial of the Appellants’ petition for name change,” Baker wrote.

 

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  1. Well, maybe it's because they are unelected, and, they have a tendency to strike down laws by elected officials from all over the country. When you have been taught that "Democracy" is something almost sacred, then, you will have a tendency to frown on such imperious conduct. Lawyers get acculturated in law school into thinking that this is the very essence of high minded government, but to people who are more heavily than King George ever did, they may not like it. Thanks for the information.

  2. I pd for a bankruptcy years ago with Mr Stiles and just this week received a garnishment from my pay! He never filed it even though he told me he would! Don't let this guy practice law ever again!!!

  3. Excellent initiative on the part of the AG. Thankfully someone takes action against predators taking advantage of people who have already been through the wringer. Well done!

  4. Conour will never turn these funds over to his defrauded clients. He tearfully told the court, and his daughters dutifully pledged in interviews, that his first priority is to repay every dime of the money he stole from his clients. Judge Young bought it, much to the chagrin of Conour’s victims. Why would Conour need the $2,262 anyway? Taxpayers are now supporting him, paying for his housing, utilities, food, healthcare, and clothing. If Conour puts the money anywhere but in the restitution fund, he’s proved, once again, what a con artist he continues to be and that he has never had any intention of repaying his clients. Judge Young will be proven wrong... again; Conour has no remorse and the Judge is one of the many conned.

  5. Pass Legislation to require guilty defendants to pay for the costs of lab work, etc as part of court costs...

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