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Dissolution decree reversed by Indiana Court of Appeals

A dissolution decree has been reversed by the Indiana Court of Appeals, according to court documents filed on April 26. The divided Court of Appeals, in the ruling, found that the trial court made an error when imputing potential income for the mother based on the fact she now can work since the children from the marriage are grown.

The mother filed for divorce from her husband in December of 2014. At the time, the mother was making $55 per hour as a part-time nurse practitioner. Her husband was making $95,000 per year with a bonus potential of $27,000 as a pharmaceutical sales representative.

When the couple's son started college in September of 2015, the husband requested that the mother help pay for the college expenses for their son during his first year at Purdue. The mother testified she could not help pay the expenses because of her financial situation. She testified that more hours at her job were not available and that she did not want to switch to full-time work because she wanted to care for her daughter, who still lived at home.

In an amended decree issued in April of 2016, the court ruled that the potential bonuses for both spouses could not be figured into child support because they are unknown. The decree also ruled that since the son was not living at home and the daughter was 13, the mother could work full-time, so her income was imputed at $55 per hour for a 40-hour week. This led to an income of $2,200 per week being assigned to the mother and both parents were ruled to share expenses.

The mother decided to appeal the ruling from the trial court, citing various issues, ultimately winning the appeal towards the end of April. The Court of Appeals ruled that the decree is to be recalculated. It is to include bonus income for both parents and enter a new order for college expenses.

An experienced family law attorney can answer all of your questions regarding child support obligations in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Source: Court of Appeals of Indiana, "Karen B. Salser, Appellant-Petitioner, v. Gregg A. Salser, Appellee-Respondent," April 26, 2017

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