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What does the Court of Appeals holding in In Re J.B. really mean? - Family Law News

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Family Law News

Posted on: Nov 9, 2016

By Lindsay Faulkenberg, Kids' Voice of Indiana

Recently, I’ve heard and participated in some discussion about what the holding in a recent Court of Appeals decision means with regards to a CHINS order surviving the closure of the CHINS case. The Court of Appeals issued a decision in In Re J.B. in June, and then later issued an opinion on rehearing in September. Some lawyers read the Court’s decision as stating that a CHINS order does not survive the closing of a CHINS case. This holding would be contrary to I.C. 31-30-1-12 and I.C. 31-30-1-13. However, the facts of the case alter this reading of the J.B. opinion; in J.B., the CHINS Court closed the case without entering a dispositional decree, and consequently, there was no order to survive the closure of the case. Based on this strict reading of the facts, I do not believe this holding in any way modifies I.C. 31-30-1-12 and I.C. 31-30-1-13. The Court clearly believes that the legislature needs to take a closer look at what was intended by both statutes. There is a lengthy discussion in the opinion about what an order “establishing or modifying paternity” means, and contrasts the paternity jurisdiction statute (I.C. 31-30-1-13) with the dissolution jurisdiction statute (I.C. 31-30-1-12). Read case summaries of both decisions in the PDFs below.

View the original decision here.
View the opinion on the rehearing here.

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