Indiana Divorce Power: What Are "Provisional Orders"?

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Indianapolis Divorce Lawyer Justin Bowen discusses Indiana divorce law:

Continuing our series on what I call “Indiana Divorce Power,” I thought I would discuss “Provisional Orders” or sometimes called “Temporary” or “Interim” orders. Remember the point of this series is to give you education – to empower you. Knowledge is POWER.

“Provisional Orders” are orders that the court may issue during the time a divorce case is pending. These are only temporary orders – and are not intended to last forever. Think of provisional orders as “rules to play by” while the divorce is in process. Let’s look at an example.

Let’s say both parents work. They have two children, a house, a dog, a mortgage, credit cards, a rental property, bank accounts, and they each have a car. As we all know, the bills pile up fast. And when a divorce is contemplated, one of the first places people go is to the kids… followed by the bank.

Well the court is aware of this, and so are the lawyers. We see it quite often. People in a divorce are not always thinking clearly under the stress of the situation and poor decisions are made.

As such, your lawyer may suggest that you seek “provisional orders” for both parties to follow while the divorce is pending. The provisional orders might say that the father gets possession of the marital residence, physical custody of the children, and one car. The mother may get possession of the car she is driving, the dog, and the rental property. Husband has to pay the mortgage and the maintenance and insurance on both cars, and mom has to pay child support. They each are responsible for one of the credit cards. In limited cases, the court may order that one party pay money each week to the other spouse in the form of “spousal maintenance.” We will cover spousal maintenance in another entry soon.

So talk to your lawyer about “provisional orders” if you feel like they are necessary. They provide clear cut rules for everyone to play by, and they set important boundaries for the behavior of both parties.

— Indianapolis Divorce Lawyer Justin Bowen of Bowen Law, LLC.