You and your spouse worked hard for what you have accumulated over the years: home, cars, vacation property. During a divorce, dividing properties and assets take time and communication to figure out. It is always best to have an agreement in place when splitting your property.
The court becomes involved when spouses cannot make decisions on the division of their property or assets. Indiana is an equitable distribution state. Do not confuse equitable with equal. It does not mean equal division; it means fair division. Both separate property and marital property are taken into account. The process of equitable distribution is looking at the needs of each spouse and what is fair to both parties.
In some cases, the court splits assets 50/50. In others, one spouse may get more than the other. The court makes the decision on a case-by-case basis, beginning from the assumption that the division of marital property is just and reasonable unless one spouse presents evidence to contradict it.
When a resolution does not happen between the parties, the court steps in. Indiana Code 31-15-7-5 takes the following questions into consideration:
- How long was the couple married?
- How much did each spouse contribute to the combined marital property?
- What are the needs of each spouse due to age or health?
- Are any minor children involved? Who has custody of the children?
- What are the financial needs of each spouse?
- Are there any negative actions committed by a spouse?
High net worth
When there is a significant amount of assets, property and debt, division becomes more complicated and more expensive. These are typical high net assets:
- Business ownership
- Farm or ranch land
- Stocks and bonds
- Real estate
- Corporate shares
The court handles high asset divorces the same as any other divorce, with equitable distribution. When there is so much at stake, speaking with an experienced attorney may help you find a satisfying compromise.