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    What Is Collaborative Law?

    Last updated 9 days ago

    If you want to end your marriage without going through court proceedings, collaborative law could be the answer for you. Using collaborative law, your divorce attorney can work with the opposing divorce attorney as well as a team of other professionals to come to the decisions required to dissolve your relationship. Could a collaborative law divorce be the right answer for you? Here is what you need to know.

    How Does Collaborative Law Work?
    Collaborative divorces happen outside of the courtroom with the help of divorce attorneys, and sometimes financial advisors, child custody experts, and therapists. During this process, the divorcing parties agree to how they will divide everything from finances to time with the children. Because there are no depositions, testimony, or waiting for court dates involved, collaborative divorces are often faster than traditional divorces. Collaborative law is not the same as mediation, but mediation can be used as part of collaborative divorces.

    What Are the Requirements for Collaborative Law Divorce?
    To divorce during a collaborative law proceeding, couples must not be hostile to each other. Any acrimony between the divorcing couple can make coming to the necessary agreements difficult if not impossible. Complete honesty is also required, especially about financial matters that you may have kept private or hidden during the marriage. If truths that are revealed during the collaborative law proceedings could turn an amicable situation sour, then you may want to consider traditional divorce.

    Should I Consider Collaborative Law Divorce?
    If you have an amicable relationship with your ex, then this kind of divorce could prevent unnecessary expense and stress. However, if the possibility of successfully negotiating your separation is unlikely, a traditional divorce may be a better answer. Your divorce attorney can help you make the right choice for your situation.

    The divorce attorneys at Ruppert & Schaefer, PC can help you choose the right approach to your divorce to preserve your rights. Make an appointment today with Paula Schaefer or Lainie Hurwitz, both of whom are trained Collaborative Professionals, to discuss your case. You can reach us by calling (317) 660-8243.  

    Are You Going to Change Your Name After Your Divorce?

    Last updated 17 days ago

    After a divorce, in the midst of many changes, women have one more big decision to make: should they return to their maiden names? There is no right or wrong answer to this question. Women make decisions about keeping their married names or changing back for a number of different reasons, so you need to decide what the best fit is for you.

    For some women, the desire to share a last name with their children trumps all else. For others, changing back to a maiden name marks a desired fresh start. One major consideration is your career. If you’ve built a name for yourself using your married name, changing it could compromise the reputation you’ve worked hard to create. Some divorced women stick with their married names simply because they’re used to them and don’t wish to go through the process of re-adopting their maiden names.

    Divorce is complex, but the divorce attorneys at Ruppert & Schaefer, PC walk our clients through every step of the process. If you’re considering divorce, make an appointment with one of our attorneys by calling (317) 660-8243. 

    Your Guide to Paternity Law in Indiana

    Last updated 25 days ago

    In Indiana, paternity can be established immediately after birth up through age 20. Whether you’ve just had a baby out of wedlock or you’re going through a custody hearing in which paternity is an issue, here is what you need to know.

    What Exactly Is Paternity?
    The relationship between a father and a child is called paternity. In Indiana, when you establish paternity, you make that relationship legal. Establishing paternity provides both the father and the child with many more rights than they would have without formalizing the relationship legally.

    How Is Paternity Established?
    Within the first 72 hours of birth, paternity can be established if both parents sign a paternity affidavit from the State Department of Health. After that time, the father can complete a paternity affidavit at his local health department until the child reaches age 20. Paternity can also be established as part of a court case if a genetic test is ordered. Note that these rules apply when the father is not married to the mother. Indiana state law automatically considers a husband to be the father of a child.

    What Rights Come with Paternity?
    Establishing paternity confers a long list of rights on father and child. For fathers, it gives them standing in custody cases and the ability to provide benefits to their child, including health insurance life insurance and Social Security benefits in the event a father dies during the child’s minority. Children can benefit from the sense of identity that comes from knowing both sides of their families.

    Ruppert & Schaefer, PC can help you navigate your paternity case.  Our lawyers are committed to providing excellent family law services, including divorce, child custody, and much more. To schedule an appointment, please call (317) 660-8243.  

    Megan Lewis: 2014 Outstanding Volunteer Attorney

    Last updated 1 month ago

    Associate Megan Lewis received the Neighborhood Christian Legal Clinic’s 2014 Outstanding Volunteer Attorney Award at the Clinic’s Justice for All Celebration in recognition of her service to the Clinic beginning as a law clerk in 2010 and continuing as an attorney. She now serves as a program volunteer attorney for the Hoosier Veteran Assistance Foundation of Indiana which seeks to meet the legal needs of homeless veterans.

    Attorney Profile: Lainie A. Hurwitz

    Last updated 1 month ago

    At Ruppert and Schaefer, PC we are proud to be staffed with a number of dedicated and skilled professionals. One of these professionals is Lainie. Hurwitz. Keep reading for a brief background on Lainie A. Hurwitz.

    Beginning her studies at Indiana University in Bloomington, Lainie A. Hurwitz earned her Bachelor of Science in Business in 1995. She then passed her bar examinations in 1998 after studying at the University of Dayton School of Law in Ohio. Ms. Hurwitz places her focus solely on family and domestic law and mediation. Lainie is also fully trained as a Collaborative Law Professional. She is a member of the Hamilton County Bar Association, the Indianapolis Bar Association, and the Indiana State Bar Association. She has been recognized by Law and Politics Magazine as a Rising Star and prior to joining Ruppert & Schaefer owned her own practice from 2002 to 2005.

    If you would like to know more about Lainie Hurwitz, contact Ruppert and Schaefer, PC or visit our website. We provide the Indianapolis area with a variety of legal services regarding families and divorces. For more information about our legal practice, feel free to give us a call at (317) 660-8243.

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