Common Questions About Florida Divorce
Getting divorced is a serious decision that can affect not only the future of your relationship, but also custody of your children, ownership of your assets, and your financial prospects. Because it has such wide-ranging consequences, making this decision requires a lot of contemplation and planning. To this end, we’ve included answers to some of the most common questions we receive about the divorce process in Florida.
What are the Divorce Filing Requirements in Florida?
Couples who want a Florida divorce must be able to meet the state’s residency requirement, which means that the petitioner, or his or her spouse, must have lived in the state for the last six months. To prove residency, a petitioner will need to provide a Florida ID card, a Florida voter’s registration card, a Florida driver’s license, or a third party affidavit. Attaining permanent employment in the state or purchasing a home can also be used as evidence of residency.
How Long Does Divorce Take?
How long it takes to finalize a divorce depends on a couple’s specific circumstances, including whether they are pursuing a contested or uncontested divorce. The former requires litigation over divorce-related issues, like how marital assets will be divided and whether one spouse will be required to pay the other alimony upon divorce. When a divorce is uncontested, two parties are able to reach an agreement on these matters in an out-of-court setting. Contested divorces tend to take much longer to resolve than uncontested proceedings, which can be finalized in as little as a few months. A contested divorce, on the other hand, could take more than a year. It’s important to note that Florida does have a 20 day waiting period, which starts from the date that a divorce petition is filed, so most divorces will take at least three weeks.
Do I Have to Go to Court?
Again, couples who are able to reach an out-of-court agreement on the terms of their divorce won’t have to go to court, although they may be required to attend a single in-person hearing. Couples, however, who are unable to agree on property division, alimony, and child custody will need to litigate those issues, which in turn means that they must attend numerous court hearings before a judge makes a final decision.
How Much Does Divorce Cost?
Estimating the cost of divorce is difficult, as it is largely based on how long the divorce takes, whether the parties are engaged in litigation, and whether they are represented by an attorney. All couples will, however, have to pay a filing fee, which varies by county, but usually run around $400. Beyond court fees, the cost of a couple’s divorce will depend on how complicated the divorce is, the couple’s willingness to reach a settlement, and how much their attorneys charge per hour.
Call Today for Help with Your Divorce
If you have more questions about the Florida divorce process, or would like to begin the filing process, contact dedicated Fort Lauderdale divorce lawyer Sandra Bonfiglio, P.A. by phone at 954-945-7591 or by sending us an online message.