Fathers could be ordered to help pay for cribs, diapers and more under approved bill
Indiana courts could order new fathers to help pay for more expenses related to childbirth under legislation a step away from becoming law.
Under current law, courts can order fathers to pay for half of expenses related to medical needs surrounding childbirth – prenatal and postnatal care, hospitalization and delivery.
Legislation that sailed through the House and Senate with almost no opposition, HB 1009, expands that list to include, as Rep. Elizabeth Rowray (R-Yorktown) explained, items for when the baby goes home from the hospital – a crib, feeding supplies and diapers, for example.
The Senate made a small addition, Rowray said: the expenses must be “reasonable.”
“So, I liken that to, you need a baby crib, but you don’t necessarily need the big, round one that’s three times more expensive than a regular, rectangular one,” Rowray said.
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The measure is headed to the governor's desk. If it becomes law, it wouldn’t take effect until January 2024.
The bill ended up much different from where it began this session. The original legislation would have extended child support to conception, rather than beginning at birth.