Child Custody, Support and Visitation

Lake County Child Support Attorney

Serving families from our offices in Merrillville for 15 years.

lake county child support attorneyChild custody disputes are highly emotional because they may impact on the essence of the parent-child relationship, and conflicts about child support and parenting time (visitation) can also be stressful. As your child support lawyer and advocate, my aim is to help you reach your goal in the most effective way possible, whether by a negotiated parenting agreement or by litigation in court. Many times, a negotiated agreement may be less costly, both emotionally and financially, and can reduce the effects of a custody battle on your children. I draw on my training as a mediator in family law cases and my experience as a mental health counselor and nurse to assist my clients in negotiating these important matters that so significantly affect the welfare of children.

I’m Julie R. Glade, a family law and child support attorney in Merrillville, Indiana. There are situations in family law when mediation or a negotiated settlement just won’t resolve the conflicts. In those cases, parties must take the dispute to court and let the judge decide the issues. I stand ready to advocate on your behalf and to assert your rights and your position in court when litigation becomes the necessary avenue to finalize your case.

In addition to my activities as a licensed attorney and a registered nurse, I have served as a guardian ad litem in Lake and Porter Counties. A guardian ad litem is a person appointed by the judge to investigate a case and report to the court in child custody cases and other matters that affect the best interests of the children. My experience as a guardian ad litem helps me understand what information judges need to make child custody determinations.

Child Custody

The differences between sole, joint, legal and physical custody can make a difference in your approach to parenting and co-parenting your children. Child support, visitation rights and parenting time issues are determined based on the specific circumstances that surround you and your child. In general, the Indiana Parenting Time Guidelines provide for the minimum amount of contact between children and the non-custodial parent. Non-custodial parents can request more time with their children than the minimum when this additional time is appropriate or realistic. Conversely, custodial parents may pursue limitations on parenting time if necessary to protect the interests of the child.

Shared parenting can make a big difference in child support payments. Indiana courts may reduce the child support obligation of the non-custodial parent depending on the amount of time each year that the child stays with that parent for overnight visits.

Modifications to Child Custody, Child Support and Parenting Time (Visitation)

Child custody, child support and parenting time orders can be modified after divorce or after previously established paternity orders. It is important to understand that such modifications should be accepted and adopted by the court. You would be well advised to avoid a modification of these orders based on a verbal agreement or understanding with the other party. Without a signed order from a judge, you run the risk of being held to the prior order by the court, regardless of your verbal understanding or agreement. You should not attempt to modify child support without a child support attorney on your side.

Child custody can be changed for various reasons, and even by agreement of the parties. A modification in child custody usually requires a showing of a substantial and ongoing change of circumstances from the prior order, and a showing that such a change would be in the best interests of your child.

  • Examples supporting a custody change are numerous, and any one reason, in and of itself, may not be enough to warrant a change in custody, even if the same reason was sufficient in another case. Courts evaluate changes in custody on a case-by-case basis. Child support can be changed if there is an ongoing, continuous and substantial change in circumstances that makes the current support amount unreasonable, or if a year has passed since the prior order and the support payment would increase or decrease by at least 20 percent.
  • Examples of reasons for child support modification also are numerous and can include situations such as a job loss, a child custody change, the birth of another child, relocation of a parent or an income change, among many other possible circumstances.

Child in Need Cases

A child in need (CHIN) case stems from an allegation of neglect or abuse to a child. The Department of Child Services (DCS) may become involved and begin an investigation. I am able to become involved in these cases, representing parents and fighting for their rights. My training as a mental health nurse provides me with a wealth of knowledge about these types of cases and allows me to stand by clients through appearances before a judge, anger management classes, therapy, parenting classes, and any complicating factors that may affect the situation.

Hire an Experienced Lake County Child Support Attorney

I would be happy to evaluate your case if you give me the opportunity. Simply schedule an appointment by calling (219) 736-0456 or by filling out the contact form on this web site. From my law office in Merrillville, I serve clients throughout Lake County and Porter County in Northwest Indiana.