The Basics Of Filing For Divorce In Florida
The divorce laws of every state vary, so it’s a good idea for Florida couples who are thinking about ending their marriages to become familiar with Florida’s specific divorce filing-related rules. For help navigating the Florida divorce process, or for assistance with your divorce-related questions and concerns, call our legal team or send us an online message today.
Meet Florida’s Residency Requirements
The first thing you’ll need to do if you and your spouse are considering divorce is to make sure that you meet Florida’s residency requirements, which state that to file for divorce, at least one of you must have lived in the state for the last six months.
Establish that Your Marriage is Irretrievably Broken
Florida no longer requires couples to provide evidence of fault in order to end a marriage. Instead, couples must assert that their marriage is irretrievably broken, which means that nothing can be done to repair it. If both parties consent to the divorce, then this matter is considered proven on the basis of a statement to this effect. If, however, the divorce is contested, or one spouse doesn’t agree to the divorce proceedings, then the parties may need to provide proof that the marriage is not savable.
File the Divorce Petition
The next step in filing for divorce is to actually submit a divorce petition. This will require the completion of a fair amount of paperwork and details about the parties’ assets, incomes, and children. This petition must be served on the other spouse, who will then have 20 days to respond to the petitioner’s statements and make requests of his or her own.
What happens from this point on will depend on the couple in question. If, for instance, neither party wishes to contest any issues, but are able to reach an out-of-court agreement, then they’ll only need to record that agreement and then attend a hearing where a judge will decide whether or not to approve the settlement. If, on the other hand, the parties don’t agree on how marital assets will be divided, whether one of the parties will be required to pay alimony, or if the couple shares children, how they will divide parenting time, then they will need to attend a series of court hearings and present evidence to a judge, who will then be tasked with coming up with a divorce settlement agreement on the parties’ behalf.
Set Up a Free Consultation
If you and your spouse are thinking about filing for divorce, you’ll likely need the help of an attorney, who can help you navigate the process. With so much at stake, you don’t want to risk going into the process without the information that you’ll need, which can cause costly delays. For a better idea of how an experienced Fort Lauderdale divorce lawyer could help with your own case, call Sandra Bonfiglio, P.A. at 954-945-7591 today. You can also schedule a meeting by reaching out to a member of our legal team via online message.