Q. How do I start a divorce in Indiana?
You can start your divorce by filing a verified petition in any state court in Indiana.
Q. How long does it take to get a divorce in Indiana?
Technically, your divorce may be granted 60 days after it has been filed. However, unless you have no children or property, it is unlikely that all of the issues would be resolved in that time period.
Q. Do I need a lawyer to get a divorce in Indiana?
No. If you prefer, you may proceed without an attorney; however, you are required by law to present yourself as an attorney does. This is called proceeding pro se. You can get the documents required to process your case at the local clerk’s office or online at in.gov/judiciary and follow the links. Many judges encourage, and some require, parties with children to seek legal representation, even when custody is agreed. It is also a good idea to retain a lawyer when you have property and bills to divide.
Q. Do I need to have a specific reason to get a divorce in Indiana?
No. The only requirement to get a divorce in Indiana is that the marriage is “irretrievably broken,” and you must be willing to testify to that under oath.
Q. What happens after I file the divorce papers?
The Court will schedule a provisional hearing, usually within 30 days. At that hearing, if you do not have an agreement, the court will listen to you and your spouse and then will make preliminary decisions about who will keep the house, who will be responsible for which bills, who will have physical custody of the children, and how much child support will be. These decisions are all temporary until the time of the final hearing. At the final hearing, the judge will address all of these issues again and make changes where appropriate.