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Adoption:                                        Indiana Code 31-19-1-1 et seq.

Child Custody:                                Indiana Code 31-17-1-1, et seq.

Modification of Child Custody:      Indiana Code 31-17-2-1, et seq.

Child Support:                                Indiana Code 31-16-1-1, et seq.

Child Support Modification:           Indiana Code 31-16-8-1, et seq.

Divorce:                                          Indiana Code 31-15-1-1, et seq.

Grandparent Visitation:                  Indiana Code 31-17-5-1, et seq.

Paternity:                                        Indiana Code 31-14-1-1, et seq.

Visitation:                                       Indiana Code 31-17-4-1, et seq.

Pre- and Post- Nuptial Agreements

UCCJL - Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Law:

Indiana Code 31-17-3-1, et seq.

UIFSA - Uniform Interstate Family Support Act:

Indiana Code 31-18-1-1 et seq.

Questions about Indiana Custody?

Follow this link to my Answers to Custody Questions Page

Indiana Divorce in Brief [VERY brief!],

We can represent you in any one of the 92 counties in Indiana if you have an uncontested divorce. Under Indiana Code 31-15-2-13 if, at least sixty (60) days have passed after a petition for dissolution is filed, a court may enter a Summary Dissolution Decree without holding a final hearing, so long as certain "verified" [under oath] pleadings are filed:

1.     a written waiver of final hearing signed by each party, and

2.     either a statement that there are no contested issues or a
        written agreement entered into by the parties.

Even if you do not live in Lake or Porter counties, our office may still be able to represent you. Go to our FEES IN UNCONTESTED DIVORCE CASES page.

Petitions for divorce, child custody, child support, and visitation in Indiana are filed under Title 31 of the Indiana Code. In order to file for divorce in Indiana, you must have been a resident of the state for a period of 6 months prior to filing. You must also have been a resident of the county that you are filing in for at least 90 days. Indiana Code 31-15-2-6.

A petition may be filed in either the circuit or the superior court of the county. Under Indiana law, a divorce can not become final until at least sixty [60] days have passed after the filing of the petition. Indiana Code 31-15-2-13.

After a divorce petition is filed, either party may ask for a hearing on provisional orders, Indiana Code 31-15-4-1. "Provisional" orders are temporary orders that will remain in effect until the divorce is final. At the hearing, a party can ask for:

          (1) temporary maintenance;
          (2) temporary support or custody of a child of the marriage entitled to support;
          (3) possession of property; or
          (4) counseling.

It is important to note that a Court may, from time to time during the proceedings, order you or your spouse to pay all, some, or NONE of the other spouse's attorney fees. Indiana Code 31-15-10-1.

Indiana has something called the Indiana Child Support Guidelines, [from the web page of the Morgan Superior Court, Room 2, in Martinsville, Indiana, the Honorable Christopher L. Burnham, Judge] that are referred to when matters involving child support are addressed.

While you may try to do this on your own, it is essential that you understand ALL of the nuances in the law. You may need to obtain the assistance of a lawyer to assist you in understanding the guidelines and how they apply to your situation. It would not be wise to negotiate a settlement on your own without full financial disclosure and a full understanding of the guidelines.

Once you have a full understanding, and once you have full disclosure of income, your lawyer will then plug income and certain limited expense items into the appropriate spaces on the Child Support Worksheet [again, thanks to Judge Christopher L. Burnham!].

As far as property settlement is concerned, in Indiana the Court "shall presume that an equal division of the marital property between the parties is just and reasonable," but there are many factors that the Court can look at that would allow it to find that a 50-50 split would not be fair. Those can be found in Indiana Code 31-15-7-5

After a divorce has been finalized, if a noncustodial parent is regularly paying child support for a child and is barred by the custodial parent from exercising court ordered visitation rights, the noncustodial parent may file a request for a permanent injunction. Indiana Code 31-17-1-4.

Also, it is important to note that under Indiana Code 31-17-4-3:

In any action filed to enforce or modify an order granting or denying visitation rights, a court may award:
          (1) reasonable attorney's fees;
          (2) court costs; and
          (3) other reasonable expenses of litigation.

In determining whether to award reasonable attorney's fees, court costs, and other reasonable expenses of litigation, the court may consider among other factors:

          (1) whether the petitioner substantially prevailed and whether the court found that the respondent knowingly or intentionally violated an order granting or denying rights; and
          (2) whether the respondent substantially prevailed and the court found that the action was frivolous or vexatious.

If you plan on talking with an attorney, I have prepared a DIVORCE CHECKLIST that you can complete which may help you at your initial consultation.

There are similar provisions for paternity cases. An overview of Indiana Paternity provisions can be found at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services website dedicated to the Administration for Children and Families.

Here are some links dealing with Family Law:

DivorceSupport.com Page: The DivorceSupport.com home page offers a list of divorce-related resources.

Divorce-online: Divorce Online offers articles, information, and links relating to divorce.

Adoption Network: AdoptioNetwork offers a wide variety of resources relating to adoption. The legal resources section has summaries of adoption rules for each state.

ACF: Administration for Children and Families offers links to various programs (e.g. Child Support Enforcement, AFDC), and news and other informational resources.

Child Support Enforcement: State profiles, containing descriptions of State child support enforcement programs offered by the Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement.

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This is an advertisement. Any legal opinions expressed at this site relate to the state of Indiana only. If you reside or carry on business in any other jurisdiction please consult an attorney in your own jurisdiction.

WARNING: All information contained herein is provided solely for the purpose of giving basic information only. It should not be construed as formal legal advice. The author disclaims any and all liability resulting from reliance upon such information. You should seek and consult with your own professional legal counsel before relying upon any of the information contained herein.

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