It may be possible that the relationship that you used to have with your spouse has changed over the years. But even if a couple no longer cohabits, they are still married so long as they are not legally divorced.
Being married has legal implications, and they vary from one state to the other in the United States. But in general, while a couple is not legally divorced, they have some obligations towards one another irrespective of the state laws.
It is only after getting divorced that a spouse is eligible to get remarried. Similarly, anything you obtain while you are married may come with a claim of ownership by the other spouse if you are not divorced. Hence, if one is concerned about ownership claims, one may contemplate going for a divorce. Another advantage that comes with getting divorced is that the ownership status of the marital property is clarified.
Getting an online divorce in Indiana
In many cases, the divorce will be contested, and the divorcing couple will require legal advice. They’d need to hire a divorce lawyer or mediator to navigate the process. Setting up an initial consultation seldom takes more than a phone call, and it is sometimes free of charge.
When you and your spouse are in full agreement with the terms of the divorce, it is categorized as an uncontested divorce. This delivers full control to the couple for the divorce. In such a case, a couple can start their Indiana divorce online. Many reliable online services can help fill out the paperwork, leaving you just to print, sign, and file them with the court.
DIY divorce in Indiana
A do it yourself divorce is known as a DIY divorce. It is a self-help option for an uncontested divorce, irrespective of whether or not a couple has children.
This is the most affordable option, as everything is done without a lawyer’s assistance.
A separation agreement in Indiana
When you and your spouse decide to have an uncontested divorce, you’ll need to put the terms of your separation into writing. This is known as a Separation Agreement. It should include all major issues, such as property division, child custody and visitation, and alimony.
A Separation Agreement is a legally binding document between you and your spouse. As such, it needs to be signed by both parties and notarized.
Coming to an agreement is an affordable arrangement
No marriage breakdown comes without its issues. Negotiating a compromise on the divorce issues before filing with the court is an easy way to overcome hassle. It merely calls for some communication and participation.
Couples that can negotiate on their own will keep their divorce expenses lowest.
If some issues cannot be worked out without assistance, mediation is a good option, as it is typically less expensive than hiring attorneys.
Couples that cannot work out some of their issues will have to go through a divorce trial to argue their side in front of a judge, requiring each side to hire lawyers and significantly increase the divorce’s overall cost.
Filing for divorce in the state of Indiana
In nearly every case, a couple contemplating divorce can file the same in the state that they reside. They are governed by the state’s divorce laws, even if they were married elsewhere, for example, in Nevada. For the Indiana state court to have jurisdiction over your divorce, you must meet the state’s residency requirements.
Residency requirements for an Indiana divorce
At least one of the spouses must have an established residency in the state for at least six months and in the county where the petition will be filed for three months before the divorce can be filed. This is also applicable for the military personnel stationed in Indiana.
What if your spouse does not reside in Indiana?
So long as you meet the residency requirements, your spouse need not reside in the state of Indiana for the divorce proceedings to take place in an Indiana court. You can instead send over the documents for getting a divorce to your spouse. After he/she signs them and sends them back, you can file the same with the local county court.
Divorcing spouses living in different states is a commonplace occurrence.
Filing fees for a divorce in Indiana varies between $132 and $152, depending on the county where you reside.
Would I require an attorney to file for divorce in Indiana?
Thousands do their own divorce in Indiana without hiring a lawyer, but it is only recommended if your case is uncontested. If you and your spouse find it difficult to come to terms with the conditions of your divorce, the divorce process will proceed to court. The judge will then make the decisions for you.
The aforementioned is a case of a contested divorce, and in this case, hiring a lawyer will come to be useful in several ways.
On the contrary, when the couple agrees over all matters pertaining to the divorce, it becomes an uncontested divorce. Both parties are willing to sign the divorce papers in this case.
Overall, filing your own divorce is one of the best ways to keep the cost of divorce lower.
Grounds for a divorce filing in Indiana
The following are the grounds for getting a divorce in Indiana:
No-Fault: A marriage has irretrievably broken down
Fault: There are several fault-based grounds for divorce. The main ones include adultery, alcohol abuse/drug addiction, a felony conviction, impotence, incurable insanity (which lasts for two years), and domestic violence.
Waiting period for getting a divorce in Indiana
In an uncontested case, the divorce will be finalized within 30 to 90 days waiting period after the divorce paperwork has been filed with the court, But this is frequently subject to a court’s caseload. When a judge is available, he will sign the final decree of dissolution of marriage.
An internet divorce can speed things up some by allowing you to get your paperwork completed and filed in less time. Top sites usually have all the paperwork in around two days.
Appearance in court
In the case of an uncontested divorce, divorce hearings are routine in Indiana. There are cases wherein the spouses file the Verified Waiver of Hearing document to eliminate the requirement. But it ultimately depends on the judge.
A couple contemplating an uncontested divorce in Indiana will likely have a short court hearing lasting about 15 minutes. This lets a court be sure that the divorcing couple understands the parameters associated with support, visitation, and custody.
When a couple does not have any children, the process is further streamlined.
Name change as a part of the divorce
A wife can take back her former birth name as part of the divorce filing. It is easier to affect the same when the divorce proceedings are in progress than after the divorce.
Debt and property division
In an uncontested, online divorce, the court will stay clear regarding the property that belongs to your spouse or you. Each party is allocated what they desire based upon their wishes. In case of a conflict, a contested divorce is an alternative.
Hence, the spouses should be clear regarding the division of assets and liabilities in the case of an uncontested divorce.
Addressing the retirement accounts
The Indiana court will address matters involving retirement accounts. The couple will have a choice of dividing any marital portion of an account by a specific percentage or a dollar amount.
Division of the marital home
The Indiana court overseeing the divorce proceedings will address the matters concerned with the marital home’s disposition. The options available will include co-ownership, transfer among spouses, planned sale, and sale.
Alimony or spousal support
Matters regarding temporary or permanent spousal support will be covered by the Indiana court that oversees your divorce proceedings. One of the possibilities is that the rights to spousal support are waived. The couple will also agree upon a specific amount for a set period of time.
The parameters associated with the desired spousal support will be defined and limited. They may terminate in the event of remarriage or cohabitation.
As per Indiana law, a support order needs to be in place for all minor children.
The court will have faith in the divorcing couple’s judgment. If they come up with a reasonable support amount, the court will approve it. It will be fine if the amount varies from the state’s recommendation for monthly support.
The state’s recommendation for monthly support will vary based upon a parent’s income. The court will discuss the matters with the divorcing couple if they intend to deviate from the amount.
In case the support amount stated by a couple is very low or very high, the judge will look for an explanation. They will have a choice of accepting or not accepting your proposed child support amount.
Child support guidelines can be modified following a divorce in Indiana in case of a significant change in circumstances that affect one’s standard of living. The circumstances should be substantial and permanent, and unaccountable during the divorce proceedings.
The divorcing couple decides the matter of sole or joint custody of the children in the event of an uncontested divorce. They can come up with their own visitation and parenting time schedules.
Notarizing divorce documents
A few of the divorce documents need to be notarized for a divorce in Indiana. These documents will include notary clauses below individual signature lines.