Contact A Fort Wayne Divorce Lawyer Today
Few couples imagine when they first get married that their union will end in divorce. However, this is the case for thousands of Indiana residents. Although the process of divorce can be emotionally painful and stressful, it is often the best solution for a family struggling with marital discord. A highly skilled divorce attorney can help guide families through this process by explaining filing procedures, inventorying assets, and advocating for the party’s best interests in court or during mediation.
Filing for a Dissolution of Marriage
Indiana is a no-fault divorce state, which means that courts do not require one of the parties to allege fault in order to obtain a dissolution. Instead, the filing party can simply state that the marriage is irretrievably broken. One of the spouses must also have been a resident of the state for at least six months prior to the filing.
One of the most difficult aspects of many divorces is dividing marital property. Indiana adheres to the rule of equitable division, which means that a judge initially presumes that property should be divided equally. Problems with property division usually occur when:
- One spouse exclusively owned a piece of property prior to the marriage;
- The property cannot be split in half;
- Both spouses want sole ownership of the asset;
- One spouse has wasted marital assets; or
- One spouse obtained an asset through an inheritance or as a gift.
In these cases, a judge listens to arguments from both parties before reaching what he or she deems is a fair division.
Creating a child custody plan can also turn contentious in many divorce proceedings. Although courts generally encourage divorcing parties to agree to a joint custody arrangement, this is not always in the child’s best interests, so the court will assess a series of factors before determining how a couple will share legal and physical custody of a child. The factors could include:
- The child’s age;
- The emotional bond between each parent and the child;
- Each parent’s ability to provide a stable environment for the child;
- The child’s established living pattern and the impact of changing this pattern; and
- The child’s preference, if he or she is mature enough to have a valid preference.
Having the advice of an experienced divorce attorney is key to helping a party demonstrate to the court what type of custody arrangement is in a child’s best interests.
In Indiana, it is a parent’s duty to provide for his or her children. This does not change upon divorce, meaning that one or both parties will be required to pay child support. The amount depends on a series of factors, including each parent’s income and resources as well as how much time each parent spends with the child.
Call us Today to Speak With an Experienced Divorce Attorney
In some cases, divorcing couples are able to reach an out-of-court agreement regarding division of property, child support payments, and parenting time. These types of uncontested divorces are often less stressful for all parties involved and can save both spouses a significant amount of time and money. At The Bellinger Law Office, we understand that not all dissolutions are this simple and dedicate ourselves to providing sound legal advice and support to our clients in an effort to help the process go as smoothly as possible, while also aggressively representing their interests. If you live in Indiana and are considering a divorce, please call us at 260-428-2214 today.