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Indiana divorce: do you have to divide property in court?

On Behalf of | May 23, 2023 | Property Division

It is no secret that a divorce takes up so much time, energy and money from divorcing spouses. It is most especially daunting when the process reaches the property division aspect. This is because the court will have to consider multiple factors when equitably distributing marital assets and debts.

But the good news is that divorce is not a one-way street. And as time passes, more options become available for spouses when going through the divorce process – one of which is mediation.

Agreeing on a division proposal in mediation

Divorcing spouses have the option to create a property division proposal on their own and submit it to the court for approval. This happens during a private mediation between the spouses, with a neutral third party facilitating the discussion. Mediation is mainly possible when the parties have a civil relationship and are both open to negotiating the terms of the division.

Mediation has become a popular alternative for separating spouses because it gives them more power to control the agreement terms. Moreover, it is also cost-efficient compared to when the court handles the property division since there could be delays in the latter option, which can result in additional costs.

The court still has the last say

While divorcing parties can determine the property division by themselves, they still have to submit the agreement as a proposal to the court. The court must review the proposal to ensure the division is equitable and just. If a provision in the agreement is financially detrimental to one of the spouses, the court will consider it unenforceable.

Mediation is not always the best option for separating spouses. It is still best to carefully consider all the circumstances surrounding the divorce to determine your next move. If you have doubts, consulting with a legal professional might help you weigh the pros and cons of mediation.