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Bill Watch, April 16, 2019: Current Family Law Legislation of Note - Family Law News

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Family Law News


Posted on: Apr 18, 2019

The IndyBar Legislative Committee is currently monitoring the following family law related legislation. IndyBar members can request that the Legislative Committee track specific legislation by contacting committee chair Mindy Westrick at mindy.westrick@faegrebd.com.

Click here to view the full Bill Watch reports.

HB1006    DEPARTMENT OF CHILD SERVICES. (STEUERWALD G) Provides that an older youth who received foster care is eligible to receive collaborative care services until the individual becomes 21 years of age. Provides that the caseload of a family case manager may not be more than: (1) 12 active cases relating to initial assessments; (2) 12 families in active cases relating to ongoing in-home services; or (3) 13 children in active cases relating to ongoing services who are in out-of-home placements. Requires the department of child services (department) to initiate an assessment immediately, but not later than two hours (rather than one hour, under current law), after receiving a report of child abuse or neglect if the department believes the child is in immediate danger of serious bodily harm. Requires the department to provide a report concerning an assessment or investigation of a report of suspected child abuse or neglect not later than 45 days after the department initiates the assessment if the report of suspected child abuse or neglect was received from certain entities. Provides that a child is a child in need of services if the child's parent, guardian, or custodian has failed to supply the child with necessary food, clothing, shelter, medical care, education, or supervision: (1) when the parent, guardian, or custodian is financially able to do so; or (2) due to the failure, refusal, or inability of the parent, guardian, or custodian to seek financial or other reasonable means to do so. (Current code does not consider financial ability.)

HB1014    UNAUTHORIZED ADOPTION ADVERTISING. (TORR J) Provides that the unauthorized adoption advertising statute does not apply to an Indiana resident seeking to adopt a child on the resident's own behalf. Removes a provision that requires an attorney licensed to practice in Indiana and a child placing agency licensed under the laws of Indiana to include certain information in an advertisement regarding adoption. Makes conforming amendments.

HB1432    PARENTAL INCARCERATION. (MACER K) Provides that a child in need of services (CHINS) case plan must include a description and discussion of: (1) the services and treatment available to an incarcerated parent at the facility at which the parent is incarcerated; and (2) how the parent and child may be afforded visitation opportunities, unless visitation with the parent is not in the best interests of the child. Requires a CHINS dispositional decree to provide a reasonable opportunity for a parent of the child who: (1) is incarcerated; and (2) has maintained a meaningful role in the child's life; to maintain a relationship with the child, subject to the safety of the community and best interests of the child. Provides that a petition to terminate a parent-child relationship (TPR) may be dismissed if: (1) the parent is incarcerated or the parent's prior incarceration is a significant factor in the child having been under the supervision of the department of child services (department) or a county probation department for at least 15 of the most recent 22 months; (2) the parent maintains a meaningful role in the child's life; and (3) the department has not documented a reason to conclude that it would otherwise be in the child's best interests to terminate the parent-child relationship. Provides that in determining whether to dismiss a TPR, a court may consider the length of time remaining in an incarcerated parent's sentence.

HB1520    CHILD SUPPORT. (GIAQUINTA P) Provides that the duty to support a child ceases when the child becomes 19 years of age unless the child is a full-time student in a secondary school.

SB1    DEPARTMENT OF CHILD SERVICES. (HOUCHIN E) Provides that an older youth who received foster care is eligible to receive collaborative care services until the individual becomes 21 years of age. Requires the department of child services (department) to initiate an assessment immediately, but not later than two hours (rather than one hour, under current law), after receiving a report of child abuse or neglect if the department believes the child is in immediate danger of serious bodily harm. Provides that a dispositional decree must require the department to continue exercising due diligence to identify all adult relatives of the child and adult siblings who may be considered as out-of-home placements for the child. Requires the department to include information: (1) concerning the department's continued effort to identify all adult relatives of the child and adult siblings who may be considered as out-of-home placements for the child; and (2) from a foster parent in a progress report prepared for a case review hearing or permanency hearing. Allows a foster parent, relative, or de facto custodian with whom a child has been placed for at least six months to file a petition to terminate the parent-child relationship (TPR) involving a delinquent child or a child in need of services if: (1) the child has been removed from a parent and has been under the supervision of the department for at least 15 months of the most recent 22 months; and (2) a petition for TPR has not been filed by the department, the child's court appointed special advocate, or the child's guardian ad litem. Provides that the best interests of the child must be considered in determining placement of an alleged child in need of services who has been taken into custody. Requires a court to consider certain factors when considering a petition to intervene filed in a child in need of services proceeding by a foster parent, long term foster parent, or a person who has been a foster parent of the child. Provides that before a child who was: (1) placed in an out-of-home placement; and (2) moved from the out-of-home placement to an in-home placement; may be returned to an out-of-home placement, the court and the department shall make a reasonable attempt to place the child in the previous out-of-home placement. Provides that a foster parent, relative of the child, or de facto custodian with whom the child has been placed for at least six months may file a notice with the court if a petition for TPR has not been filed concerning a child who has been removed from a parent and has been under the supervision of the department for 15 months of the most recent 22 months. Provides that if a notice is filed with the court, the court shall order the department to file a petition for TPR within 15 days of the order. Provides that the failure to obey the court order is punishable as contempt of court.

SB197    COPIES OF IDENTIFYING ADOPTION INFORMATION. (HEAD R) Provides that a person releasing identifying adoption information must, upon request by the individual requesting the identifying information, provide copies of the identifying information to the individual. Makes a correction regarding exceptions to the release of identifying information.

SB206    CHILD SUPPORT MODIFICATION. (YOUNG M) Defines, for purposes of child support modification, an order with respect to child support.

SB208    ELECTRONIC FILING AND NOTICE. (YOUNG M) Allows a person to use electronic filing or service instead of mailing in certain cases if electronic filing or service is authorized by rules adopted by the supreme court.

SB323    DRUG TESTING AND VISITATION. (CRIDER M) Authorizes a court to require a parent to submit to drug testing as a condition of exercising parenting time rights if the court finds that: (1) the parent has a history of unlawful drug use within the previous five years; or (2) there is a reasonable likelihood that the parent is currently using unlawful drugs. Specifies that the parent shall pay the costs of the drug testing.

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