Proposed parenting time revisions open for comments

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The Domestic Relations Committee of the Indiana Judicial Conference is seeking feedback on proposed changes to Indiana’s Parenting Time Guidelines, including new guidelines on the concept of “shared parenting.”

The committee is accepting comments on the proposal from the bench, bar and public through 1 p.m. ET May 14.

The most significant proposed change is the addition to the guidelines of a section on shared parenting. The proposed new Section IV would explain the concept of shared parenting and how to put its principles into action.

“All Shared Parenting plans, by definition, make a deliberate effort to provide the child with two parents who are actively involved in that child’s day to day rearing,” the proposed language reads. “As a consequence of an effectively implemented Shared Parenting plan, the child will spend time in the home of each parent as a resident, not a visitor.

“The home of each parent will be a place where the child learns, works, and plays,” the proposed section continues. “To effectively implement a Shared Parenting plan, each parent will need to do the work required to make his or her home a home base for the child.”

Other proposed changes include guidance on:

  • Parenting time during a public health emergency.
  • Reducing potential for third-party conflict when children are dropped off/picked up between homes.
  • Uniformity of pick-up/drop-off times on holidays and birthdays.
  • Transportation to and from extracurricular activities.
  • Text messaging as a common type of communication.
  • Immunity of parenting coordinators.

Also, the proposal calls for the removal of the section on parallel parenting, which would be replaced with the section on shared parenting.

Comments on the proposed changes can be submitted online or mailed to Indiana Office of Court Services, c/o Domestic Relations Committee, 251 N. Illinois St., Ste. 800, Indianapolis, IN, 46204.

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