Divorce in Indiana
Our lawyers are experienced in assisting clients with the difficult and often complex issues involved in divorce. We recognize that a divorce is one of the most serious legal undertakings a typical family may experience, and many of our clients come to us without any prior experience dealing with lawyers beyond buying a house or settling a traffic ticket. Divorce can involve many complex issues such as custody disputes, property division, spousal maintenance, real estate ownership, will and trust interpretation, business valuation, insurance coverage, pension benefits distribution or division, and more.
We work to achieve solutions that serve the client’s interests and ensure that the client receives a fair and equitable property division. Our lawyers counsel clients through each step of the process and strive to ease the emotional impact on families. Our divorce-related services are comprehensive, and include:
- Consultations– We regularly meet with prospective clients and discuss what their options are. For some individuals, they may want to file for a legal separation. Others may want to file for divorce, and some may have already been served with divorce papers. Whatever the situation, we can assist you in preparing for the next steps.
- Conferences– After a case has been started, we regularly meet with clients and spouses prior to going to court in an attempt to resolve issues related to property division and custody. If the spouses are able to reach an agreement, we prepare the paperwork, obtain signatures, and file in the appropriate court. If the spouses are unable to reach an agreement, we proceed to court for a final determination.
- Mediation– In some situations, when spouses are unable to agree, we may participate in mediation. Mediation involves the use of a mediator who will assist the clients and their attorneys in reaching an agreement.
- Familiarity with the Courts- The adjudication of divorce is based on the understanding that every situation is unique, and therefore the law is designed to allow judges considerable discretion. No juries are involved in domestic matters. Therefore, it is important to remember that the outcome of a divorce matter is determined not only by the law as written, but also by the personalities of the judges who make the decisions and experts who advise them. Things are not always black and white, and it is important to have an attorney who is familiar with the judge and his or her approach to decision-making.
- Divorce Settlement Issues- We strive to ensure that our clients receive fair property divisions, and that their interests are protected. When children are involved, we seek to establish a custody and parenting time arrangement that will serve the best interests of the children. We have broad experience in evaluating and counseling our clients on the following:
- Child Custody and Parenting Time
- Property Division
- Child Support
- Post-Secondary Educational Expenses
- Valuation of Businesses and Addressing Various Types of Business Interests
- Valuation of Real Estate
- Premarital and Inherited Assets
- Spousal Maintenance
- Qualified Domestic Relations Orders and Retirement Benefits
- Prenuptial Agreements
- Health Insurance Options
- Post-Divorce Issues- As time goes by, it is not unusual for one or both ex-spouses to seek a change in the Divorce Decree, especially with changing economic circumstances or the evolving needs of the children. The party seeking a modification usually must prove that there has been a substantial and continuing change in circumstances, such as a significant change in income, child-care issues, or the relocation of one ex-spouse to another state. NLKJ attorneys are well-versed in protecting our clients’ interests when it comes to advocating for a modification in custody or child support, or defending against an unjustified request for a modification.
- Enforcement- We are experienced in ensuring that our clients are treated fairly in any enforcement proceedings. We remind our clients that just because a judge has ordered a particular settlement does not mean that the other party will always comply with the court order. Whether you are trying to enforce a provision in your Divorce Decree, or are being asked to show cause for why you did not comply with a provision, we can assist and provide you with representation. We caution that the legal system is not always equipped to fix every wrong, and address every injustice. Accordingly, even in enforcement proceedings, we encourage our clients to reach compromises.