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Pending petition for child support becomes applicable after Legislature amends statute

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A trial court will have to reconsider its ruling in a child support dispute in light of a state law that was changed while an appeal of the case was pending.

Richard Littke had filed a petition to obligate his ex-wife, Laurie Littke, to help cover their daughter’s college expenses in 2012. The trial court granted Laurie Littke’s motion to dismiss because the couple had already agreed their daughter was emancipated pursuant to Indiana Code 31-16-6-6 effective July 1, 2012.

While the father’s appeal was pending before the Indiana Court of Appeals, however, the Legislature enacted an amendment that made his petition timely.

During the 2012 and 2013 sessions, the Indiana General Assembly amended I.C. 31-16-6-6 which governs the termination of child support and emancipation of a child. In 2012, the Legislature changed the presumptive age for termination of child support from 21 to 19. The next year, the governing body added subjections addressing the filing of a petition for education needs.

Consequently, the Court of Appeals found under the applicable version of I.C. 31-16-6-6 the father’s petition was not untimely. In Richard Littke v. Laurie Littke, 64A03-1211-DR-509, the COA reversed the order dismissing the father’s petition for postsecondary educational expenses as untimely and remanded to the trial court to make a determination on the merits of the father’s petition.

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  2. Hail to our Constitutional Law Expert in the Executive Office! “What you’re not paying attention to is the fact that I just took an action to change the law,” Obama said.

  3. What is this, the Ind Supreme Court thinking that there is a separation of powers and limited enumerated powers as delegated by a dusty old document? Such eighteen century thinking, so rare and unwanted by the elites in this modern age. Dictate to us, dictate over us, the massess are chanting! George Soros agrees. Time to change with times Ind Supreme Court, says all President Snows. Rule by executive decree is the new black.

  4. I made the same argument before a commission of the Indiana Supreme Court and then to the fedeal district and federal appellate courts. Fell flat. So very glad to read that some judges still beleive that evidentiary foundations matter.

  5. KUDOS to the Indiana Supreme Court for realizing that some bureacracies need to go to the stake. Recall what RWR said: "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!" NOW ... what next to this rare and inspiring chopping block? Well, the Commission on Gender and Race (but not religion!?!) is way overdue. And some other Board's could be cut with a positive for State and the reputation of the Indiana judiciary.

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