Nesting – What is it?

nestingIf you and your spouse are considering divorce, you will soon face many important decisions. If you have children, one of the most important decisions will be who will live where, and with whom. You may also have to decide where one or both parents will exercise their parenting time.

These days, there are plenty of options when it comes to living arrangements during and after divorce.  One such arrangement that has been in the news lately is called “nesting” (sometimes referred to as “bird’s nest” custody or visitation).  A recent contributor to the Huffington Post described his experience with nesting this way:

Here’s how it works: whichever one of us has our son stays at the house with him. The other spends their time at an apartment within our multi-family property. Our son always stays at “his” house. My ex and I both have our own bedrooms at the family house and at our apartment. On holidays and on certain occasions we all will sleep at the house. The apartment is adults only and we are never both at the apartment at the same time. Our son has been to the apartment to check it out and so he knows where we are when we say, “mom is at the apartment.”

As the author goes on to note, nesting may not be for everyone, but it works for his family. The attorneys at Ruppert & Schaefer, P.C. are available to discuss what might be best for your family both during and after a divorce. To make an appointment with one of our attorneys, call (317) 580-9295.

Ruppert & Schaefer, P.C. | Why should I Establish Paternity?

dna-testsIn Indiana, children born during a marriage are presumed to belong to the husband. But what if you’ve never been married? Without establishing paternity through the court, single fathers don’t have the same rights automatically afforded to married fathers. While it’s true that dads share equal rights with mothers, a single man only gains his standing when paternity is established through the court system.

It is often assumed only mother or the prosecutor can file a paternity action. This is not true. A man who suspects he may be a father can file a petition to establish paternity and begin the process to gain parenting time (visitation) or even joint or full custody. A paternity action will also specify any child support obligation by either the mom or dad.

Protecting a Father’s Rights

What if the mom wants to put the baby up for adoption? A father still has rights in this instance. Indiana has a Putative Father Registry to help protect a dad’s rights. A potential father should register with the Putative Father Registry (a) before the child’s birth; (b) within 30 days after the baby is born,  or (c) before an adoption proceeding is filed, whichever occurs last. Registering with the Putative Father Registry will insure that a man receives notice of an adoption if a biological mother decides to elect this route. The State provides a form that can be downloaded, notarized, and filed with the Department of Health.

If you would like to consult with the attorneys at Ruppert & Schaefer, P.C. to learn more about paternity rights, please call (317) 580-9295.