Friday, January 15, 2010

Getting Divorced in Indiana and The Wife Is Pregnant

This post concerns itself with searching Google Scholar for Indiana case law.

I noticed the fallowing query on Google brought someone to this blog: "Indiana divorce law pregnancy". I assumed the person sought information about what to do when the wife is pregnant after start of the divorce proceedings.

Since I do not think that I have written on the specific issue, I thought this was a good time to take Google Scholar for a test drive.

The original query did not work very well and so I tweaked the query until by using "Indiana "dissolution of marriage" pregnant wife" I got some results.

If the search was what to do when a wife is pregnant and father doubts paternity, then I think the following set of facts describes a good procedure for father:

Russell v. Russell, 682 NE 2d 513 - Ind: Supreme Court 1997 - Google Scholar
The Russells were married in 1987 while wife was three months pregnant with J.R. During the course of their marriage, wife gave birth to three children, including J.R.

On October 29, 1993, husband filed for dissolution of the marriage and gained temporary custody of the children. In early 1994, however, the trial court approved an Agreed Entry of Joint Custody and Visitation providing that the children would spend 3.5 days per week with each parent. Later, on April 15, 1994, wife filed an Emergency Petition for Temporary Custody and Petition to Terminate Visitation, wherein she maintained that husband was physically abusive toward the children. Her petition was denied. On May 5, 1994, wife filed an Emergency Petition for Modification of the 1994 Agreed Entry, again claiming physical abuse of the children and also asserting that husband was not the biological father of J.R. On June 15, the trial court ordered DNA testing, but husband would not comply. On February 3, 1995, husband, under threat of contempt for failure to submit to the DNA testing, and wife signed an Agreed Entry of Paternity stipulating that husband was not the biological father of J.R. The trial court initially approved the Agreed Entry, but 515 when wife stated that she did not plan to establish paternity in anyone else, the trial court stated that it would vacate it. Before that happened, wife withdrew the 1995 Agreed Entry.
(Lawyers, notice that the opinion contains the West pagination as well as the West citation.)

Got doubts about paternity? Then file a motion for DNA testing. The same procedure can be found in this case: Richard v. Richard, 812 NE 2d 222 - Ind: Court of Appeals 2004 - Google Scholar.

None of this matters unless the child's paternity is questionable.

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