On July 1, 2012, the legislature amended Indiana Code § 31-16-6-6 by changing the presumptive age for termination of child support from twenty-one to nineteen. In this case, the Court of Appeals addressed the effect of the amended statute on child support orders entered before the amendment.
Here, before section 31-16-6-6 was amended, the trial court entered an order requiring a father to pay child support until his son's twenty-first birthday. The Court of Appeals held that the statute controlled over the trial court’s prior order. Therefore, the father's support obligations terminated upon his son’s nineteenth birthday.
This decision answers an important question for family law practitioners and should provide clarity to courts faced with petitions to modify support obligations based on the amended statute.
The Court was careful to recognize that parties may still enter into agreements to provide child support past a child’s nineteenth birthday. The Court also clarified that its decision applied only to child support obligations and had no effect on a parent’s obligation to provide educational support.
Finally, it is worth noting that the mother (the appellee) in this case did not file an appellate brief. However, as the Supreme Court has recognized, an appellee who did not file a brief before the Court of Appeals may still seek a transfer. See N. Indiana Pub. Serv. Co. v. Minniefield, 823 N.E.2d 273 (Ind. 2005). Therefore, the Supreme Court may still review this decision if the mother chooses to seek a transfer.
The information contained in the Barrett McNagny LLP website is for informational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice on any subject matter. Furthermore, the information contained on our website may not reflect the most current legal developments. You should not act upon this information without consulting legal counsel.
Your transmission and receipt of information on the Barrett McNagny LLP website, or sending an e-mail to one of our attorneys or staff, will not create an attorney-client relationship between you and Barrett McNagny LLP. If you need legal advice and want to establish an attorney-client relationship with Barrett McNagny LLP, please contact one of our attorneys by telephone, email, or other means of communication, and allow the attorney to confirm that the firm does not represent other persons or entities involved in the matter and that the firm is willing to accept representation. Until such confirmation is provided by one of our attorneys, you should not transmit information to us that you consider confidential. If you do provide information to us, and no attorney-client relationship is established, the information will not be considered confidential or privileged, and our receipt of such information will not preclude us from representing another client in a matter adverse to you.
Any links to other websites are not intended to be referrals or endorsements of those sites.
Thank you for contacting us!
A representative will be in touch with you shortly.
An attorney-client relationship will NOT be formed merely by sending an email to Barrett McNagny, LLP or to any of its attorneys. Please do not send any information specific to your legal needs until you obtain approval from a Barrett McNagny, LLP attorney, as the content of such email will not be considered confidential or privileged. By sending us an email, you confirm your understanding of this notification. If you agree, you may use the e-mail links on this page to contact an attorney.