The Indiana Senate Judiciary Committee amended and passed a bill unanimously Wednesday afternoon that would entitle caregivers to legal representation in children in need of services cases.
Coming home: Courts, families celebrate National Adoption Day with fanfare, emotion
Since 2012, the Indiana Supreme Court has authorized video and audio coverage of certain uncontested adoptions in recognition of National Adoption Month each November. Numerous trial courts have put together celebrations for families this year.Read More
Senate Bill 180 reignites conversation about direct representation for CHINS, TPR proceedings
Indiana is one of just six states that does not require counsel for children in child welfare cases in any situation, according to the National Association of Counsel for Children. Although Indiana Code § 31-32-4-2 does give state court judges the discretion to appoint counsel for children in child welfare cases, stakeholders say the Hoosier State could be forced to implement a direct representation program either through lawsuits filed by national children’s rights organization or federal legislation that Congress is considering.Read More
Kids’ Voice, Child Advocates finding ways forward after shift of GAL/CASA contract
The fallout is continuing from Indianapolis’ decision to switch providers of CASA and guardian ad litem services.Read More
CHINS filings stabilize after surge in recent years
Filings for child in need of services and termination of parental rights cases have swung in opposite directions in the past few years, according to statistics released recently by the Indiana Supreme Court.Read More
Taking a close examination of state statutes, the Court of Appeals of Indiana has rejected multiple arguments from two foster parents trying to get their foster children returned and found the trial court did not abuse its discretion.
A southwestern Indiana judge is facing a slew of judicial disciplinary charges for alleged misconduct in his handling of two child welfare cases.
A mother who has been both a “victim and perpetrator” of domestic violence has failed to convince the Court of Appeals of Indiana that her children aren’t CHINS.
COA upholds murder convictions, 100-year sentence for teen convicted in siblings’ suffocation deaths
An Indiana teen convicted in adult court of killing two of his younger siblings has failed to convince the Court of Appeals of Indiana to toss his murder convictions or his 100-year sentence.
LaPorte and Tippecanoe counties are piloting a National Center for State Courts project called “Upstream,” a framework which aims to prevent child maltreatment and out-of-home placement, reduce court involvement, and support safe and healthy families.
A mother and father whose transgender teen was removed from their home due to allegations of abuse has failed to convince the Court of Appeals of Indiana that their rights as parents were infringed upon when the court intervened.
Foster parents whose efforts to adopt two foster children fell through can proceed with their negligence and defamation claims against the Indiana Department of Child Services, but not against a DCS caseworker, the Court of Appeals of Indiana has ruled.
A West Virginia mother whose children were taken into emergency custody in Indiana could not convince the Court of Appeals of Indiana that the adjudication of her kids as children in need of services was the wrong decision.
A Marion County father who mistakenly tried to attend a child in need of services hearing in person instead of online shouldn’t have been denied a new factfinding hearing, the Court of Appeals of Indiana has ruled.
DCS caseworkers who allegedly threatened parents with CHINS case must face civil suit, 7th Circuit rules
Two DCS caseworkers who allegedly threatened a couple with a CHINS proceeding if they did not submit their child to a blood draw must face the parents’ civil lawsuit, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled, overturning a lower court finding that the caseworkers were protected by qualified immunity.
A mother with a history of mental illness and trouble with the law will regain custody of her children after a split panel of the Court of Appeals of Indiana determined there was insufficient evidence to prove her kids were CHINS. But a dissenting judge expressed concern about the children incurring their mother’s “wrath” if left in her care.
A Wabash couple who had reached a $2.75 million settlement after an Indiana Department of Child Services family case manager was found to have made false allegations of abuse and neglect is now suing the state for not approving the settlement agreement.
The Court of Appeals of Indiana has found a juvenile court that reset four times a factfinding hearing for a CHINS petition and, consequently, exceeded the 120-day statutory deadline did not abuse its discretion because the Indiana Department of Child Services needed extra time to procure the testimony of two physicians.
Senator bucks legislative leadership, announces study of direct representation for kids in CHINS, TPR cases
Although the Legislative Council rejected a request to study the topic of providing attorneys to children in the child welfare system, Indiana state Sen. Jon Ford plans to keep pushing the matter by convening an independent study group to examine the issue.
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has dismissed a lawsuit pushing for better treatment of children in Indiana’s foster care system, finding it difficult to determine what options for relief are open to a federal court but closed to a CHINS court.
Because a mother remained quiet in a CHINS hearing, the Court of Appeals of Indiana has affirmed that the trial court had good cause for failing to hold a factfinding hearing within the statutorily required 120-day time frame.
The Marion Superior Court Executive Committee has announced the family recovery court, which started in 2010, will be closing at the end of the month. Dwindling participation along with concerns about how the program was being operated have been cited as among the reasons for the decision to stop. But stakeholders and graduates say the closure will have a devastating impact, rippling beyond the participants to their children and extended family members.