What Factors Do Indiana Courts Consider for Property Division?

Indiana courts are required to consider certain factors in property division, which are stated specifically in Indiana Code (IC) Section 31-15-7-4 – Division of Property.  These factors are as follows:

Sec. 4. (a) In an action for dissolution for marriage under IC 31-15-2-2, the court shall divide the property of the parties, whether:

(1) owned by either spouse before the marriage;

(2) acquired by either spouse in his or her right:

(A) after the marriage; and

(B) before final separation of the parties; or

(3) acquired by their joint efforts.

(b) The court shall divide the property in a just and reasonable manner by:

(1) division of the property in kind;

(2) setting the property or parts of the property over to one (1) of the spouses and requiring either spouse to pay an amount, either in gross or installments, that is just and proper;

(3) ordering the sale of the property under such conditions as the court prescribes and dividing the proceeds of the sale; or

(4) ordering the distribution of benefits described in IC 31-9-2-98(b)(2) or IC 31-9-2-98(b)(3) that are payable after the dissolution of marriage, by setting aside to either of the parties a percentage of those payments either by assignment or in kind at the time of receipt.

IC 31-15-7-5 – Presumption for equal division of martial property; rebuttal – This section of the code provides a rebuttable presumption that marital property shall be divided equally.  Specifically, this section provides:

Sec. 5. The court shall presume that an equal division of the marital property between the parties is just and reasonable. However, this presumption may be rebutted by a party who presents relevant evidence, including evidence concerning the following factors, that an equal division would not be just and reasonable:

(1) The contribution of each spouse to the acquisition of the property, regardless of whether the contribution was income producing.

(2) The extent to which the property was acquired by each spouse:

(A) before the marriage; or

(B) through inheritance or gift.

(3) The economic circumstances of each spouse at the time the disposition of the property is to become effective, including the desirability of awarding the family residence of the right to dwell in the family residence for such periods as the court considers just to the spouse having custody of any children.

(4) The conduct of the parties during the marriage as related to the disposition or dissipation of their property.

(5) The earnings or earning ability of the parties related to:

(A) a final division of property; and

(B) a final determination of the property rights of the parties.

How Will Your Property Be Divided?

Once we learn about your facts and circumstances, we can advise you as to how this section may apply to your property division.

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