Hamilton County Divorce Rules
Did you know that divorce rules are different county to county? This posting summarizes the rules specific to individuals divorcing in Hamilton County Indiana:
Financial Declarations & Child Support Worksheets
Parties must date and file these forms prior to any hearing or trial. Financial Declarations shall be exchanged by the parties and filed with the Court not less than three working days before any preliminary hearing and not less than ten working days before the final hearing. Child Support Worksheets shall be exchanged and filed with the Court on the hearing date. Child Support Worksheets must be attached to all proposed orders and decrees addressing child support.
If there are any assets or obligations not disposed of by written agreement between the parties, the litigants must prove the value of the assets and the amount of obligations at the hearing.
Financial Declarations shall be considered as received in evidence subject to cross-examination. Direct examination, on matters in the Financial Declaration, should be confined to unusual factors which require explanation, or to corrections.
Parenting Time/ Visitation
Prior to April 1, 2001, Hamilton County Circuit and Superior Courts had adopted Visitation Guidelines.
Mediation & Divorcing with Children
The Circuit and Superior Courts of Hamilton County have a local rule that strongly encourages parties to mediate there cases before trial. The rule states that the Courts “find that it would be in the best interest of the minor child or children of the parties to encourage mediation and cooperation between divorcing parents prior to and after dissolution of their marriage.”
Additionally, the Courts require a parenting workshop because it will “aid parents in post-separation parenting; aid development of healthy child/parent relationships in a post separation setting; be in the best interest of the minor child/children and; encourage agreements between the parties concerning child related matters”. Thus, both parents in any divorce, in which there is a minor child/children under eighteen (18) years of age, must attend a workshop entitled “Children Cope with Divorce” (COPE). The four-hour course shall be completed by both parties within Sixty (60) days of the filing of the Petition for Dissolution and prior to the Final Hearing. Failure to complete the workshop can result in a party being ordered to appear and show cause why he/she should not be held in Contempt of Court and punished. If the parties cannot attend the COPE workshop, with the prior approval of the Court, they may use an alternative workshop.
Automatic Temporary Restraining Orders
In an divorce case filed in Hamilton County, the parties shall not, without hearing or security: Transfer, encumber, conceal, sell or otherwise dispose of any joint property of the parties or asset of the marriage except in the usual course of business or for the necessities of life, without the written consent of the parties or the permission of the Court; and/or
Remove any child of the parties then residing in the State of Indiana from the State with the intent to deprive the Court of jurisdiction over such child without the prior written consent of all parties or the permission of the Court.