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Uncontested Divorce: A Roadmap for the Future

Divorces are rarely easy, but an uncontested divorce can help reduce costs and save time. This kind of divorce occurs when both parties accept the terms of the union, including child custody, alimony, and property distribution. It is important to note that not all couples qualify for an uncontested divorce. A contested divorce is the next step if you cannot mutually agree on these issues.

Filing for Divorce

Spouses who agree on all divorce terms (such as property division, debt repayment, spousal support and custody/visitation arrangements) can file for an uncontested divorce. They can work with a lawyer to complete the necessary forms. This method can reduce conflict between the soon-to-be exes and minimize the amount of information that goes into the public record. However, resolving complex issues such as dividing multiple jointly owned properties or determining a fair amount for spousal support can be challenging. Both parties must appear before a judge for an uncontested divorce hearing to ensure they fully understand and agree to all the terms. If all is in order, the judge will approve the final divorce judgment and issue a decree dissolving your marriage. The judge will review your requests to ensure they are fair, and they will also ask you questions.

Identifying Issues

When a couple gets divorced, they must come to terms with several things, including child custody, parenting time and visitation, alimony, property division, and debt distribution. Ideally, spouses can agree on all matters, and the case can proceed smoothly. However, it is not uncommon for legal issues to arise. Before a dispute arises, a knowledgeable family law attorney can assist spouses in identifying potential problems in their cases and resolving them. It can save couples time and money in the long run.

One of the biggest reasons spouses opt for an uncontested divorce Tampa is that it typically costs less than a contested divorce. Generally, only one attorney is involved for both parties in an uncontested divorce, which can be significantly cheaper than retaining two attorneys for a contested divorce. Also, filing a contested divorce can take months and even years, which equates to more costs for both spouses. It can be difficult for many families who are struggling financially.

Filing for Dissolution of Marriage

They can petition for divorce once both partners have agreed on all matters. It typically takes a few months and requires the spouse who filed the petition to be legally served with the divorce papers by someone over 18. After the spouse has been performed, that person has thirty days to file reports to contest the divorce. The court may do so if the spouse doesn’t agree to a final divorce decree within two months. The process varies from county to county. Some counties can issue the divorce in weeks and at a lower cost than others which may take nine months to a year. The divorce prices are also affected by whether or not both spouses hire attorneys, how many issues there are in the case and if one party has children. A lawyer can help guide the process and ensure all necessary forms are completed correctly.

Reaching an Agreement

As part of the uncontested divorce process, spouses must agree on all issues. It includes custody or parenting time/visitation, child support, alimony, what each person will get to keep (or give up) in the division of property such as a house, cars, pensions and retirement accounts, who covers healthcare insurance, and how to split debt. Additionally, each party can be compelled to attend a final hearing with the judge to discuss specific issues or respond to sworn questions.

Couples reaching a comprehensive settlement agreement outside the court can often skip the contested divorce process. It enables them to reduce the stress and financial burdens of a contested divorce while saving money on legal fees. Depending on the complexity of your case, you may hire a professional mediator or other experts to help you agree. You’ll need to prepare a written settlement document that details everything you have decided upon.