The overall reputation of divorce is that it is a very stressful and expensive process. Not only do people have to worry about splitting their assets and their parental rights with their spouses, but they also need to cover all of the costs generated by their divorce proceedings.
Divorce does cost money, but how much people have to pay to end a marriage depends largely on how they approach the process. Couples in Indiana have many options available to them when considering divorce. The following factors generally influence the expense involved in Indiana divorce proceedings to the greatest degrees.
The degree of conflict
Higher-conflict divorces almost always lead to more expensive divorce proceedings. The average cost for a divorce reported in 2019 was $12,900, but some divorces will cost far more or less than others. The average cost of a divorce with no contested issues in court was just $4,100 in 2019, while divorces that go to trial on two or more issues will average more than $23,000 in costs.
The presence of minor children in the family
The rules for divorce are different for those with children as opposed to those without any minors in their households. The overall process will take longer and require more oversight when there are still dependent children in the family, which can directly impact the total cost of divorce. Spouses are also more likely to fight with each other over emotional matters related to their children when compared with financial matters that they may be able to settle without experiencing intense emotional responses.
The conduct of the spouses
If people abide by Indiana state law and agree to cooperate with each other, divorce proceedings can be quick and relatively affordable. If one spouse chooses to fight the other at every turn or if they engage in some kind of significant misconduct, their behavior will inevitably affect how expensive it is to get a divorce.
The need to bring in a forensic accountant or other specialists to identify and quantify financial misconduct, for example, could significantly increase the cost of divorce and the conflict involved in the process. Many couples may find that embracing some outside expenses, like mediation or counseling for the individual spouses, could actually help reduce the total overall cost of the divorce by limiting the amount of conflict that occurs.
Carefully contemplating the factors that could increase the cost of an Indiana divorce may help those hoping to end their marriage to do so in a more frugal and amicable manner.