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What will happen to my family farm during a divorce?

On Behalf of | Aug 18, 2022 | divorce

Many people who work the agricultural land around the Indianapolis area may have invested their whole lives into the success of their farms. For some, farming may be a generational tradition in their families.

Especially since successful Indiana farming operations also have a lot of financial value and income-producing potential, the owner of the farm may be very worried about what will happen to the farm should the farmer ever divorce.

The family farm may be divided during a divorce

Under Indiana’s laws, most property owned by either or both spouses will be marital property and dividable.

Judges can take several factors into consideration before deciding on how to divide the property. Of special interest to farmers, judges can consider which spouse contributed more to building up the value of the property. They also may consider if the farm came into the couple’s hands because one of the spouses received it through a gift or inheritance.

Dividing the family farm can be complicated

As any farmer knows, farming operations are complicated businesses.

The farm’s property will no doubt include acres of agricultural real estate as well as costly supplies and expensive equipment. The farm’s value also includes crops and livestock.

Putting a value on a farm is not just a matter of checking local property listings. Doing so will usually require the help of a financial professional as well as someone with legal knowledge and experience.

Getting the right value on the farm is only the first step in actually dividing it. Unless the couple can agree, a judge will have to decide how the couple will divide the farm.

Either way, the person wanting to keep and manage the farm may have to come up with a way to buy out their spouse’s share.