Property Division in Divorce

Marital Property and Asset Division

In divorce cases in Indiana, marital property is defined as any and all property, assets, and debts, belonging to either spouse at the time the divorce is filed, such as cash, bank accounts, real estate, furniture, retirement plans, vehicles, cash value life insurance, car loans, credit cards, and mortgages.  All of this property and debt is often referred to as the “marital pot”.  The court is required to consider dividing all property and debt in the marital pot including not only jointly owned property such as joint bank accounts, but also separately titled property and debts such as a 401k’s, pensions, real estate, and credit cards, which might be in one spouse’s name alone.

Indiana courts are required to grant a fair division of property in a divorce, but not always equal.  Indiana Code Section 31-15-7-5, requires that the court must divide the marital pot equally in half, awarding 50% (Fifty Percent) to each spouse under the presumption of equal division, unless there is a good reason to rebut the presumption and give one spouse more than half based on certain factors.  Some of the factors include the length of the marriage, the amount of assets and debts brought into the marriage by each spouse, non-monetary contributions to the marriage including raising children, cooking, cleaning, and maintaining property, the wasting of assets by either spouse, gifts or inheritance received by and intended for one of the spouses alone, and the earnings ability of each spouse.   In some cases the marital home is awarded to the parent who receives primary physical custody of the parties’ children, but only if that parent has enough income to make the property’s monthly mortgage payments.

Some divorcing couples might come to their own agreement about how to divide up their assets and debts. However, each party should hire their own Family Law attorney to negotiate a settlement. If no agreement can be reached, couples will need to go to court and a judge will decide the monetary value of each piece of property and how the property will be divided.

Indiana Marital Property law can be very complicated and overwhelming. A good divorce attorney will have the experience and training to find and evaluate assets and debt and communicate to the judge their client’s wants and needs. And they are prepared to enforce court orders such as income withholding orders and contempt proceedings. Finally, all evidence must be presented at the time of property division because this cannot be changed at a later date. Division of marital property only happens once, so it’s important to have a seasoned divorce lawyer help you understand and make sound decisions regarding this.

How James Lieb Helps Clients with Marital Property and Asset Division

Marital Property Division in Indiana can be multifaceted and stressful. Attorney James Lieb is an experienced negotiator and trial attorney who strives to obtain the best possible outcome for his clients. During the divorce process, he advises his clients and helps them obtain the best possible outcome.  If you are in need of affordable representation to help with your divorce involving the division of marital property, please call attorney James Lieb.