Saturday, February 27, 2010

News - Indiana Paternity Affidavits

Checking the e-mail this morning, I noticed an update on the paternity affidavit Bill making its way through the Indiana General Assembly (SB 0178)(which I have written about here). This comes from the notice i received:

This bill does the following:

1. Permits parents to agree (via separate signature area on the paternity affidavit) to joint legal custody of their child
2. Requires that “under age” (under age 18) parents be counseled by a parent or guardian re: the significance (rights and responsibilities) of signing a paternity affidavit;
3. Extends the time that fathers who are out of the country (such as military) have to acknowledge paternity from 3 days to 10 days before their rights can be terminated and the child placed for adoption;
4. Grants immediate access of the father to the child according to the minimum reasonable frequency and duration according to the Indiana Parenting Time Guidelines that were developed and approved by the Indiana Supreme Court in 2003 (and which are presently beginning their first-ever review NOW);
5. Requires a DNA test to be provided to the Department of Health within 30 days (it will probably be increased to 60 days in Committee) to prove the father’s biological relationship with the child. If the DNA test refutes the biological relationship, the paternity affidavit is voided. The reason for this is that a study has estimated that 27% of those men signing paternity affidavits are not the biological father. Men may still choose to adopt a child who is not biologically “theirs”, but at least that will now more likely be a conscious decision.
I really like and must endorse the requirement for DNA tests. See my articles here and here and here for why I endorse this idea.

1 comment:

Indiana Custodial Rights Advocates said...

Sam-Thanks for writing about this bill. We think it is great law and plan to do more with the paternity affidavit. The next meeting of the DRC is March 19. I will be presenting the topic of 'virtual visitation' to them. Please send any subjects for review about the IPTG and suggestions to me and I will forward to them. Cheers-Stu