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New Albany Divorce Lawyer

Going through a divorce can be complicated both emotionally and legally. A trusted New Albany divorce lawyer like the team at Stein Law can advocate for you and protect your interests as you navigate this difficult process.

Divorce is an emotionally challenging time, even when both parties are in agreement and have no minor children. Hiring your own divorce lawyer in New Albany, Indiana, can protect your interests during the split, whether the separation is contested or uncontested.

Divorce, a formal dissolution of a legal marriage, means making many decisions involving your family, possessions, home, and finances, and many of these decisions must be made in a short amount of time. 

To protect your quality of life and interests, you need a divorce lawyer who will listen to you, understand your needs, give you the right options, and help you find workable compromises that still protect your interests.

During your initial consultation, we’ll answer your most urgent questions, explain the divorce process in Indiana, and prepare you to make big decisions. 

We treat our clients with respect and dignity, and we understand that you’re dealing with many emotions. We are the cool head who advocates for you and guides you through this complicated process.

How can a divorce lawyer help me?

Whether you’ve been discussing divorce with your partner for several months or unexpectedly been served with divorce papers, you must discuss important issues with your spouse, such as:

  • Dividing marital property, including financial and physical assets
  • Determining physical and legal custody of minor children
  • Scheduling parenting time
  • Determining alimony and child support obligations
  • Holidays, vacations, and other family milestones

During the divorce process, it’s often difficult for spouses to communicate effectively, think clearly about how these matters should be equitably resolved, or even think about what life will look like after the marriage ends. This is where your divorce attorney can help.

The time to hire a divorce lawyer is when you first start considering divorce, as they can help you draft your petition and include specifics regarding the issues that matters most to you. 

If you’ve already been served with divorce papers, you need a divorce lawyer immediately, as you may have a limited time to file a response or other vital court documents. Divorce is stressful enough without having to navigate the legal system alone.

When hiring a divorce lawyer in New Albany, it’s important to find someone experienced in handling divorce cases and family law. Statutes and laws can change, so having legal professional who keeps up with the changes will ensure you’re protected. 

Many divorces are resolved through mediation or negotiation rather than in court. Find a lawyer who has sharp negotiation skills to represent your interests. 

Finally, divorce can involve disclosing painful and intimate details about your life and marriage. It is essential to hire a lawyer you trust and feel comfortable with.

Frequently Asked Questions About the Divorce Process

We’ve helped countless clients through this challenging and confusing time, and their questions are typically personal and unique to their relationship and family circumstances. But there are a few general questions that arise time and again.

How do I hire a good Indiana divorce attorney?

A good divorce attorney is someone who:

You should feel comfortable with your divorce attorney because the two of you will be working closely together. You also want to feel confident in their abilities.

At Stein Law, our compassionate family law attorneys consider themselves allies and advocates with the resources and skills to support and protect our clients and their children.

How much does it cost to hire a divorce lawyer?

Most divorce lawyers request a retainer upfront, which covers the initial work they perform on your case. They will bill their rate against the retainer and present you with an itemized monthly statement. Depending on how complicated your divorce case is, you could spend thousands of dollars, as many divorce lawyers charge by the hour. 

The cost of a divorce lawyer may be daunting, but remember that you’re investing in the rest of your life and, if you’re a parent, your children’s lives, too. Attempting to save money by handling your divorce on your own could cost you much more than money in the end.

What should I do before I file for divorce?

If you’re certain that your marriage is unsalvageable, you should take steps to protect yourself before filing for divorce. Open a new email account, rent a post office box to communicate with your lawyer, and arrange to have other confidential personal and financial information sent to those addresses.

Make copies of your important records, including:

  • tax returns
  • investment account statements
  • insurance policies
  • deeds for property and your home

You may also need copies of your children’s birth certificates and Social Security cards.

How can I protect my children during the divorce?

Divorce is hard for children to understand, and they will need love and reassurance from both parents. As tempting as it may be, don’t speak ill of your spouse in front of your children. Not only is this upsetting for them, but it may also get you into trouble with the courts for parental alienation.

However, if you have legitimate concerns about the safety of your children, talk to your lawyer about legal protection, such as a restraining order or an order for your spouse to pay for temporary housing for you and the children.

Which assets and debts are mine?

Unfortunately, divorce doesn’t just mean dividing the assets. You may also have to divide shared debt, such as credit cards and loans taken out jointly. Alert your attorney to all existing debt so they can include it in the divorce decree.

How does child custody work in Indiana?

Indiana encourages parents to agree on a custody arrangement outside of court. If the parents cannot come to an agreement on their own, the parents may enter into mediation voluntarily or by court order.

If mediation is unsuccessful, the court will decide the custody arrangement. If both parents are deemed fit, the court will typically award joint legal custody and physical custody. The child will live with one parent, referred to as the custodial parent.

The non-custodial parent will generally be awarded a visitation schedule that includes a minimum of alternating weekend visits, a mid-week visit, and split holiday and summer schedules. The non-custodial parent will be required to pay child support to the custodial parent.

If a child lives with a third-party guardian, such as a grandparent, the guardian has the right to request custody and be made a party to the case. The court may award custody to the third party if this is deemed in the best interest of the child. In addition, grandparents have the right to seek visitation when the parents divorce.

What is an uncontested divorce in Indiana?

An uncontested divorce is a divorce in which both parties agree on all aspects of the divorce. An uncontested divorce does not require a judge to make decisions for you, but it does require a court order to finalize. Indiana law recognizes this as an amicable settlement.

Once finalized, the settlement agreement becomes enforceable and may not be modified unless there is a provision in the agreement allowing it or consent by both parties after the fact.

What are the laws about alimony in Indiana?

The Dissolution Act of 1973 addressed “provisions for property division and alimony or maintenance”

The state of Indiana recognizes that in some situations, one spouse may have special circumstances that make it impossible to adequately provide for their own needs. These circumstances may include any of the following:

  • Mental or physical incapacity that precludes self-support
  • A spouse lacks sufficient resources to provide self-support
  • The spouse is the custodial parent and caregiver of a child with a disability that prevents the parent from working

In these cases, a court may award spousal maintenance, which other states may refer to as alimony, for the length of time deemed appropriate by the court.

The court may award rehabilitative maintenance, which is a form of spousal support the court grants the alimony-seeking spouse to give them time to achieve financial stability.

Rehabilitative maintenance can extend for a period of up to three years if the court determines that one parent’s educational level and earning capacity is significantly lower than the other, especially if the parent’s education and training were interrupted by domestic responsibilities related to the marriage.

Choose Stein Law When You Need a Divorce Lawyer in New Albany, Indiana

If you’re considering divorce, it’s important to have a lawyer guide you through the process. Stein Law, a family law legal team in New Albany, Indiana, can help. Contact us today for a confidential consultation about your case.