Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Joint Custody

The Oregon Divorce Blog has an interesting point in Joint Custody:

"Joint custody is subject to modification by either parent. The statute provides: “Modification of a joint custody order shall require showing of changed circumstances and a showing that the modification is in the best interests of the child such as would support modification of a sole custody order. Inability or unwillingness to continue to cooperate shall constitute a change of circumstances sufficient to modify a joint custody order.” The parties must clearly demonstrate these requirements to the court. In a recent trial of mine where I represented the children, both parties asked for a modification from joint to sole custody. The court refused to grant the modification because neither party actually testified to any difficulty in making decisions jointly."
The Oregon statute does have some differences from Indiana, but essentially the law appears the same. In Indiana, joint custody presupposes an ability to cooperate. What I find odd here is that in my joint custody cases I have never seen a case where the parents testified (and I do mean both) they could cooperate.

Over at Mississippi Family Law Blog there is a good description of the difference between shared and joint custody Joint or Shared Physical Custody. I see this confusion several times a year. Joint custody does not mean shared custody. Not in Mississippi and not in Indiana.


Khan said...

What are guidelines in Indaina For Joint custody in regard to distance between homes? Meaning If one parent chooses to move how far away can they legally move with otu paper work.

Sam Hasler said...

Simply put, Indiana has no guidelines on the distance for a joint custody order. All our statutes say is this:
(5) whether the persons awarded joint custody:
(A) live in close proximity to each other; and
(B) plan to continue to do so;