How long does a divorce take? Although this question is very common, it cannot be answered clearly. Each divorce case is unique, and, in spite of the fact that each state (or, sometimes, even county) has its laws and rules to regulate the divorce process, some individual circumstances of each couple can greatly affect the length of a certain divorce.
So, in order to have more chances to predict the length of divorce in the state of Indiana, let’s sort out what are the factors which usually affect the time needed to arrange a divorce from start to finish.
If you are going to divorce in Indiana, you should be sure that either you or your spouse meets the current residency requirements of the state. Residency requirements imply the time the one needs to live within the state and particular county in order to be eligible to start a lawsuit in a certain jurisdiction. To file for divorce in Indiana, either spouse should be a resident of the state for at least six month before the date of filing. Along with it, Indiana resident should reside in a county of filing for at least three months.
Mandatory separation before filing
Some states require the spouses to be separated for a certain period of time before filing for divorce. It’s considered that such waiting-periods may reduce an amount of spontaneous divorces, as they give the spouses some time for reconciliation, if there is at least a tiny chance for it. However, many spouses disagree with such a belief, because long waiting periods may cause a lot of problems as well. Some divorce cases which are initially planned as uncontested may become contested because the spouses have so much time to quarrel about the terms and find out new problems. As a result, there is no reconciliation, but divorce process delays significantly. So, if there is such an opportunity, a lot of people prefer to divorce in the states, which don’t require mandatory separation before filing for divorce. Indiana is one of these states. But…
…Indiana courts have mandatory 60-days waiting period which starts right after filing a petition with the court. This means that even if the case is uncontested the final divorce decree can’t be signed earlier than on 61th day after filing. Surely, this is just a minimum possible term. After 60 days the spouses may file the rest of divorce paperwork (like the Waiver of hearing, Settlement agreement and proposed Decree for dissolution), and the judge signs a final order only if all the paperwork is satisfied and the agreement is fair. Otherwise, the case may be delayed. Reaching an agreement with your spouse may take more time than you expected, or the court dockets may be crowded, or something else. Often, Indiana uncontested divorce takes about four-five months to be finalized.
Waiting time after a divorce
Some people may be interested whether it possible to remarry right after a divorce. Some states have such restrictions (from 60 days to six months), but in the state of Indiana, the spouses have right to marry others any time after the final divorce decree was signed by the judge.
P.S. Notice an exception! If either spouse is an active duty service member, the Servicemembers’ Civil Relief Act (federal law) comes into force. The military spouse may be unavailable for court hearing, so the divorce proceeding may be delayed. While in a regular case a defendant has no more than 30 days to answer the petition, the military spouse have a right not to file a response for the entire time he/she is on active duty plus another 60 days after it.