If you have started to think about divorce, you have to proceed with great caution. Making a mistake early in the process could put you at a disadvantage or even affect the outcome.
One of the first decisions you’ll have to make when moving forward with a divorce filing in Indiana is what grounds you will use to request the dissolution of your marriage. Unlike other states with primarily no-fault divorce laws, Indiana still limits divorce filings to only those whose circumstances fit into one of four specific categories.
Figuring out what grounds you have for divorce is a crucial step in developing your strategy.
What does Indiana consider a valid reason for filing divorce?
The grounds for your divorce establish cause and allow one person to pursue a divorce even if their spouse doesn’t want to end the marriage. The Indiana family courts will only approve divorce for one of the following four reasons:
- The conviction of one spouse with a felony after marriage
- Incurable insanity that lasts for at least two years
- The irretrievable breakdown of the marriage
Obviously, the first three situations only apply to a small number of couples. However, the last reason, irretrievable breakdown of the marriage, is more broad-reaching. It essentially allows anyone to file for divorce without proving medical issues or wrongdoing on the part of their spouse.
Essentially, as long as you are willing and able to attest in court that your marriage has reached a point where you cannot salvage it, the court will allow you to divorce on the grounds of irretrievable breakdown.
Irretrievable breakdown is close to the no-fault standard
Although Indiana still allows fault-based filings for divorce, the inclusion of irretrievable breakdown of the marital union as one of the grounds makes Indiana a partial no-fault state. You don’t have to prove that your spouse did anything wrong to divorce.
Even if they did do something wrong, it may be faster and more cost-effective to pursue an irretrievable breakdown divorce rather than a divorce under one of the other three common grounds. Explaining your circumstances to a lawyer can lead to a discussion about the grounds and divorce process that will likely be best for your situation.