And is it a good idea to even try?
Although many marriages last for decades, one in two American unions ends in divorce. There’s plenty of room for debate about whether this is a good or bad thing, but this isn’t the venue for such speculation. The facts speak for themselves: Marriages end for all kinds of reasons, many of which are surprisingly mundane. Folks who face amicable divorces often try to navigate the process without the aid of a lawyer, but this can be a big gamble that might not pay off.
Is It Possible to Get Divorced Without an Attorney’s Help?
It’s technically possible to eliminate the attorney from the divorce process by executing a pro se (Latin for “on your own”) divorce. Although pro se divorces are legally binding and permanent, they don’t necessarily unfold in the same manner as attorney-brokered divorces.
Types of Divorce
Whether you attempt a pro se divorce or choose to go the traditional route, your separation will follow one of two broad paths:
- Contested divorces occur when the two parties can’t agree about major issues like child custody, visitation, division of assets, ownership of a family business and other matters.
- Uncontested divorces, also known as amicable divorces, occur when the parties are in agreement about these issues and are willing to attest to said agreement in a legally binding document.
Unless you have a strong legal background, it’s unwise to attempt a contested divorce without the aid of an attorney.
Other than saving some money and time, in fact, there’s no compelling reason to attempt a pro se divorce at all. The problems associated with a pro se divorce in Indiana include:
- Improper filing of complex legal documents that can result in future challenges to the divorce
- Missed response deadlines that can jeopardize the interests of the late party
- Poor communication between parties to the divorce that can lead to disagreements down the line
- Not understanding how to transfer military or retirement benefits to which you may be entitled
While it might be possible to get divorced without an attorney, it’s clearly not advisable in every situation. If you have any extenuating circumstances or are splitting with your spouse on less-than-agreeable terms, you’ll want to speak with an experienced attorney who has mediated countless divorces in Indiana. For more information about all of our divorce-related services, visit us online or call (317) 842-8283 at your convenience.