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How Does Divorce Work?

ByThe Spence Law Firm April 24, 2019

Although it may sound simple to “get a divorce” it is much more complicated than you would initially think. All Orlando divorce cases, as attorneys will tell you, begin by filing a petition for dissolution of marriage with the appropriate court. The divorce petition will lay out all of the facts of the marriage, like where and when the couple was married, if the couple has children, if they own a home, and other relevant facts are listed in the petition as well.

The party filing the divorce petition typically lays out what it is they are asking the court to do. For example, if the wife were to file, she might ask the court to dissolve the marriage, award her majority time sharing with the children, an award of child support, alimony and attorney’s fees. The husband in this example would file an answer within twenty days of the date he was served, in which he either admitted or denied the allegations in the wife’s petition.

Contested or Uncontested Divorce?

The big divide in divorce cases is whether the divorce will be contested versus uncontested. If the divorce is uncontested, then husband and wife agree that they should divorce, and also agree on all of the terms of the divorce so that they can sign a marital settlement agreement that resolves all issues, without the need to involve the court in the decision-making process. A contested divorce, on the other hand, means that the parties do not agree on the terms of the divorce and that the court will have to make most of the decisions. Disagreements commonly arise over who should have the kids more, where the kids should live, how much child support should be paid, if and how much alimony should be paid, and whether attorney’s fees should be awarded.

Financial Discovery in Divorce Cases

After the answer is filed, the parties are required to complete and file a financial affidavit and serve mandatory disclosure, which includes copies of major financial documents such as tax returns, bank accounts and pay stubs. Additional discovery typically follows, including subpoenas, written discovery, depositions and presentations by expert witnesses, if necessary. All Orlando divorce cases, as attorneys will tell you, must be mediated before they can be set for trial. Mediation is an informal settlement conference, during which the parties and a mediator meet and try and work out a settlement. If the case does not settle at mediation, then it will be set for trial at which the court will hear the evidence and enter a final judgment at the close of the case.

Call Skilled Orlando Divorce Attorney Richard Spence for a FREE Consultation.

Call Orlando divorce attorney Richard Spence at The Spence Law Firm today for a FREE consultation with a skilled divorce lawyer to discuss your case.