Changes coming: What you need to know about new laws

Dozens of laws approved by state lawmakers take effect Saturday. Here’s a look at what’s changing:

Minors required to wear helmets

House Enrolled Act 1200 requires all people under 18 to wear helmets when riding on ATVs or other off-road vehicles on public or private property in Indiana. Under the new law, owners of ATVs who allow children younger than age 18 to ride without a helmet can be charged with a Class C infraction, which carries a maximum penalty of $500.

Screening heightened for teachers

House Enrolled Act 1079 requires school employees to undergo background checks every five years. Previously, state law didn’t require teachers to undergo background checks after first accepting a job. The bill also requires the Indiana Department of Education to revoke a teacher’s license if they’re convicted of a child-related offense.

Grandparents notified of adoptions

House Enrolled Act 1245 requires adoptions attorneys to notify grandparents of pending adoptions, a requirement that gives grandparents the opportunity to petition for visitation rights if their grandchildren are being adopted.

Drone use regulated

Senate Enrolled Act 299 creates regulations for flying drones, and a person commits a Class A misdemeanor if they are a registered sex offender operating a drone to capture inappropriate images or recordings of individuals, use a drone to interfere with public safety, commit aerial voyeurism or aerial harassment. Those convicted of breaking the law face sentences ranging from probation to up to one year in jail.

Emergency contact maintained in database

House Enrolled Act 1084 requires the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles to create and maintain an emergency contact database for Hoosier drivers to make it easier for law enforcement officers to reach the loved ones of accident victims. The BMV has until July 1, 2019, to create the database.

Physicians reimbursed for training

Upon approval from the Indiana Commission to Combat Drug Abuse, Senate Enrolled Act 243 creates the Physician Medication-Assisted Training Reimbursement Pilot Program, which reimburses doctors who go through training to prescribe controlled substances to treat opioid addiction in settings other than an opioid treatment program. The bill also creates the Maternal Neonatal Opioid Addiction Project to help treat opioid-addicted pregnant women and their newborn children.

Gun laws relaxed

House Enrolled Act 1071 allows residents with a civil protective order to carry a handgun without a license for 60 days after the order is issued. The bill also requires Indiana State Police to expedite gun licenses for anyone with an order of protection.


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Samm Quinn is a reporter at the Greenfield Daily Reporter. She can be reached at 317-477-3275 or