Each state has its own rules and procedures when it comes to officially terminating a marriage. In Indiana, divorce papers do not suddenly expire when the clock strikes midnight, but couples who ask for a legal separation need to keep an eye on the clock.
Indiana's laws regarding legal separation are unique. A court can grant a couple a legal separation, along with orders on child custody, property division and family support, if it finds that the marriage is intolerable but that divorce is not in the couple's best interests.
Expiration After a Year
Unlike a divorce decree, a decree of legal separation in Indiana is not permanent. The legal separation expires at the end of one year and the spouses once again are considered a married couple. Generally, the couple either gets back together and dismisses the separation decree, or else converts it into a divorce action within the 12-month period.