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Divorcing spouses must turn to courtroom litigation if they cannot resolve one or more items of their divorce through mediation, the collaborative divorce process, or prior to filing the separation paperwork. This is called a contested divorce. Because of the stress involved in courtroom trials, pursuing a contested divorce can be one of the more difficult divorce case options. However, it may also be the only way to ensure that you receive the best resolution to your case.
At The Spence Law Firm, we help clients settle contested divorces with compassion, honesty, and diligence. During your initial consultation, our attorneys will talk with you about your case and give you a better idea of what litigation may help you accomplish. It’s our goal to put you in the best position to achieve an optimal outcome for your case.
Call (407) 794-9004 or message us to request a free consultation with our contested divorce lawyers.
Florida’s Contested Divorce Process
In Florida, a contested divorce is part of a larger divorce category called the regular dissolution of marriage. Regular dissolution of marriage is the most common type of divorce for Florida couples who have children, relatively complex financial situations, alimony determinations, or any other contested separation terms. This broader type of divorce also encompasses uncontested divorces, where spouses agree on all terms of the separation, but have minor children or require alimony (or both). The alternative to regular dissolution of marriage is a “simplified dissolution of marriage,” which is a quick and easy option for parties who agree on all divorce terms and do not have minor children nor require alimony payments.
An important function of the contested divorce process is to settle any disputes between the spouses regarding any of the following issues:
- Division of property (asset distribution)
- Division of debts
- Alimony (spousal support)
- Child custody (including visitation and parenting schedules)
- Child support
If spouses do not initially file an uncontested divorce settlement with their dissolution of marriage petition, they will either need to resolve any issues in mediation or litigate them in court. In this situation, both spouses and their legal teams will be given an opportunity to present evidence demonstrating why they are seeking certain resolutions. The judge will ultimately decide the case based on how the law applies to the evidence, legal precedent, and their discretion.
Contested divorces can be emotionally and financially difficult for you and your family. It is important that you speak with a divorce attorney regarding your rights and obligations according to Florida law. A lawyer can help you decide whether pursuing a contested is best for your situation, or whether an alternative dispute resolution method (i.e., mediation or collaborative law) might be better for you. At the end of the day, if there is little potential for you and the other party to negotiate and reach a resolution, then courtroom litigation is likely the best option.
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Pursuing a Contested Divorce in Orange County
For couples who are considering litigating contested divorce terms in Florida, it is important to consult an experienced attorney who understands the relevant local laws and courtroom procedures. They can help you weigh the facts of the case and assess your case options. They can also represent you in negotiations and the courtroom. Together, the lawyers at The Spence Law Firm have over 20 years of legal experience handling complex family law disputes throughout Orlando and Central Florida, including contested divorces. We are here to help guide you through this difficult time while doing all that we can to protect your parental, financial, and personal interests each step of the way.
To find out how our Orlando contested divorce attorneys can help you, call (407) 794-9004.
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