Contested / Contentious Divorce
Contested Divorce Process In Florida
Since the nature of many divorces is based on disagreement, a contested divorce is common in Florida. When spouses cannot agree on important matters, the divorce process takes longer to complete. If you and your spouse are facing a divorce, you need the best divorce lawyer Gainesville, FL, has to offer.
Common Issues In Florida Contested Divorce Cases
There are several issues that must be addressed and solved before a divorce is finalized. You may agree on some issues yet disagree on others. The most common issues of contention in Florida divorce cases include:
- Property division
- Debt division
Temporary orders may be issued before the final hearing for alimony, child support and custody. If you have already had a temporary hearing for custody, you still have a chance to gather documentation that will help you get or keep a favorable child custody arrangement.
Florida Contested Divorce Process
The divorce process in Florida has several steps. This is a quick overview of what you can expect. The entire process may take a year or longer depending on how quickly you and your spouse want to resolve any issues.
1. Petition & Service
First, you or your spouse petition the court for a divorce. The court has a sheriff or a designated delivery service hand the defendant divorce papers.
2. Temporary Relief
Both spouses may file motions for temporary relief for alimony, child support and custody. Any issue that cannot wait until the divorce is finalized can be addressed with a temporary relief request.
3. Financial Disclosure
You and your spouse must each complete a financial affidavit, which is a detailed account of your assets and liabilities. Also, you and your spouse must provide each other with copies of your financial affidavits and worksheets after filing them with the court within 45 days of filing for divorce.
In this phase, you and your spouse can issue discovery requests. If your spouse issues one, you must comply. This is the phase where all facts are gathered from both sides for issues such as assets, child custody and financial support.
5. Mediation & Trial
You should try to have issues resolved through mediation. This involves a third party or divorce attorneys helping you and your spouse to reach an agreement on important issues. If mediation is not effective, your case will take longer and go to trial.
How Our Gainesville Divorce Lawyers Can Help
We have helped many couples resolve complicated issues in contentious divorce cases. It is in your best interest to avoid a lengthy trial, and we can help you keep the proceedings civil and fair through mediation and collaborative law. In many cases, couples who are feuding over divorce issues are willing to make fair compromises to avoid the lengthy and expensive process of a divorce trial. Since trials can also be hard on kids, we encourage our clients to work with us for a favorable outcome through mediation. If you are searching for "divorce attorney Gainesville FL," know that we are here to help. For a free consultation, please contact our Gainesville family law firm today.