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Rule Of Right, Not Might

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Schererville Divorce Lawyers

Divorce Attorneys In Lake County, Indiana

We serve Northwest Indiana and the surrounding towns and counties

 

Relationships can be difficult to maintain, and that is perhaps especially true when it comes to married couples. There is a lot of stress that couples live with day in and day out, and sometimes that stress builds up to be just a little bit too much to handle as a couple. When that happens, there are a few legal options to consider. Sometimes, married couples just need a break from each other to figure out exactly what the issue is and whether or not they want to remain married to each other. Other times, they are certain that the marriage is not able to be saved and would simply like to move on with their lives.

Whether you are ready for a divorce or are still hoping for reconciliation sometime in the future, there are legal options available in Indiana that can help you throughout the process. At Funk & Wendlinger, LLC, we are happy to help you through the difficult divorce and legal separation processes. We understand that you are having a difficult time – that’s why we will work hard so that you do not have to worry about anything.

When couples get married, they essentially operate as a single unit. Their debts are typically shared, and even things like cars and mortgages might be in the names of both partners. A divorce is a legal and permanent separation of those two individuals in the eyes of the law. That means that their funds will no longer be pooled, for example, and that they will have to divide property or any other belongings that were jointly acquired. A divorce is essentially ending a marriage legally and allowing the former spouses to move on with their lives. They can remarry in the future and basically attempt to live their lives as the marriage never happened in the first place, should they so desire.

This is often the option of choice when it comes to extremely dysfunctional relationships where there are simply too many differences to reconcile. Divorce is not an instant solution, but rather is a process that takes time – especially if children or spousal maintenance are involved. Depending upon the circumstances of your divorce, an experienced attorney from Funk & Wendlinger, LLC, could really help ensure that your family law case is in order and that everything proceeds as effectively and quickly as possible.

Uncontested Divorce

If you are considering divorce, you might be wondering what options you have at your disposal. One of the most popular types of divorce that many of our clients at Funk & Wendlinger, LLC, opt to pursue is the uncontested divorce. This is an especially common option among spouses who are moving through the divorce process amicably and with a mutual agreement. In this kind of divorce, one party will hire an experienced divorce attorney to help draft the documents that will need to be filed with the court. Before these documents are drafted, both parties will need to first agree to the terms of the divorce. This includes things like child custody, property division and child support.

Note that while both parties must agree to the terms of the divorce and both will be affected by the agreement, both parties are not represented by the attorney. Only the individual who hires the attorney in question is represented by them. This is important if you are moving through an uncontested divorce and aren’t sure if you are receiving the best possible deal. Remember that the attorney you hire is representing your best interests, not those of anyone else.

In Indiana, there are a few different kinds of divorces from which to select. These include divorce by publication, a contested divorce and an uncontested divorce. An uncontested divorce tends to be the most cost-effective and quickest divorce option available for the majority of individuals. This is especially true if there are no complicated situations that affect the dissolution of marriage. Even a couple that must agree to co-parenting schedules, child custody and child support arrangements can have an uncontested divorce as long as both spouses are willing to agree to the terms outlined.

There are five requirements that must be met in order to qualify for an uncontested divorce:

  • Both agree to the divorce

  • Are able to reach an agreement regarding all issues

  • Use a single attorney

  • Are willing to voluntarily sign the documents in question.

  • Have assets that are valued at less than $250,000

There are certain kinds of situations in which uncontested divorce is simply not possible. In situations where spouses disagree about issues in the divorce, for example, an uncontested divorce is not an option. If you want to file specific grounds for the divorce – something like infidelity or cruelty – then you should not pursue an uncontested divorce. If either your spouse or yourself is involved in an ongoing bankruptcy, you cannot utilize an uncontested divorce. Finally, if you (or your wife) are pregnant, you should not pursue an uncontested divorce. Note that this last point holds true even if the husband is not the father of the child.

In divorce situations where the issues are more complicated – situations where any of the aforementioned issues are present – an uncontested divorce is not the way to go. A contested divorce is the better option in these cases. An uncontested divorce means exactly what it sounds like – the divorce in question is uncontested, and the process is one that both partners want to make as smooth as possible.

What is a legal separation?

Legal separation is a solution to marital problems that enables the married couple to decide to live separately while determining whether or not they would like to divorce or to stay married. Note that this does not end a marriage on its own. Legal separation serves a different function from divorce, and while it can serve as the first step to divorce, it does not always mean that the couple in question will end up divorced.

Note that, in Indiana, it is possible to obtain a divorce without a legal separation. With that said, sometimes a legal separation is useful in helping the courts decide whether or not an “irretrievable breakdown” in the marriage has occurred (and thus move the divorce along faster). To obtain a legal separation, you and your spouse must file a motion with the court system and obtain a legal separation decree. This is a document that lists all of the various terms and conditions of the separation, including things like child custody, child support and visitation, if applicable.

Do I need a lawyer?

The answer to this question largely depends upon your specific situation; however, in general, it should be noted that hiring an attorney to help with legal matters is generally a good thing. This is especially true if the legal separation is one that involves children, as there are a number of things that the court will be determining on their behalf. The custodial parent and any child support to be paid, for example, will be determined during the hearings for legal separations and divorces alike, which means that you should have the best representation possible in both instances to ensure that you receive the most desirable outcome possible.

If one of the parties in the divorce is seeking spousal maintenance, it is definitely a good idea to hire a lawyer to help ensure that the process is carried out fairly and effectively, without leaving either spouse in a bad situation.

Divorce FAQ's

If you are looking at divorce in your future, things can seem uncertain when it comes to what you can expect. There are a lot of questions that you might need to have answered, without any idea who you can turn to. We at Funk & Wendlinger, LLC, want to be able to answer some of the more common questions to get you started in the right direction.

Do I Need An Attorney For My Divorce?

In a perfect situation, a couple resolves their divorce without any issue, and the process is painless. Unfortunately, this scenario is almost unheard of. You need an attorney who can help you protect your best interests. Even if you are not contesting your divorce and your spouse tells you that you do not need lawyers for this, you are only leaving yourself at risk to make a critical mistake by not having legal advice in your case.

How Long Does A Divorce Take?

Once you file for divorce, the courts here in Indiana can take between 30 and 90 days to finalize and approve your divorce. In addition to this, the amount of time it takes to come to a mutual agreement between you and your spouse on the details of your divorce will also add to the total time. If you cannot agree, a trial will take even longer. This is another reason why an experienced lawyer can help you reduce costs with considerable negotiation experience.

Will I Get Custody?

For many parents, the well-being of their children is their primary concern during the divorce. The court will encourage you and your spouse to come to an agreement regarding custody and visitation. If you cannot, however, the court will make that decision based on the best interest of the children.

Will Alimony Be A Factor In My Case?

Indiana law does not recognize alimony but does recognize spousal maintenance in divorce proceedings. In addition, in some situations, you may qualify for some compensation from your spouse. Our team can help you review your unique situation and determine if you have any options worth pursuing.

How Do We Divide Our Assets?

Division of assets is a complicated process. In addition to determining what assets need to be divided, factors involved include what assets were earned before the marriage, the total earning potential of each spouse, the current economic situation of each spouse and even who will have primary custody of the children, just to name a few.

Contact Funk & Wendlinger, LLC to learn how a divorce and family law lawyer can help you - we work for YOU and YOUR RIGHTS!