What to Expect When Getting a Divorce In Florida
The breakup of a marriage can come as a shock or it could be something that was looming on the horizon for a matter of months or even years. In either situation, it is common to feel some apprehension about the process and what it will entail. Having an experienced Fort Lauderdale divorce attorney on your side can ensure your rights are protected during these proceedings and that you get what you are entitled to in any resulting settlement or order issued. The following explains what you can expect after filing.
What Happens During a Divorce?
Under the Florida Statutes, divorce is referred to as the dissolution of marriage. In any divorce case, there are important issues which must be addressed, such as marital property division, possible alimony payments, and child time sharing arrangements. In a simplified divorce, these issues may not apply or both parties may be in agreement on how they are handled. Once a divorce petition is filed, a hearing will likely be scheduled a few months later. Providing all legal documents have been properly submitted, a final divorce order can then be issued.
In a more complex divorce case, the couple may disagree on the terms or the circumstances surrounding the break up. As a result, the divorce process requires addition efforts and is more time consuming. Steps you can expect during this process include:
- Filing of divorce petition and any counter claims from your spouse: Your divorce petition will allege the circumstances surrounding your breakup and assert what you are seeking in a settlement. Your spouse may file an answer or counterclaim in response, disputing your version of events or any arrangements made as a result.
- Divorce discovery: This involves gathering evidence in your case, including financial affidavits and statements from both parties involved.
- Divorce negotiations: Based on information provided by you and through financial affidavits, a settlement concerning property division and alimony payments may be negotiated between you, your spouse, and both of your attorneys.
- Mediation: If you are unable to reach a settlement, the judge may require you to attend mediation with an impartial third party.
- Child time sharing negotiations: In addition to negotiating a financial settlement, you and your spouse will also need to submit a Florida parenting plan outlining child time sharing arrangements.
- Divorce related hearings: If you and your spouse are able to reach agreements through negotiations with your attorneys on matters pertaining to money and children, a final hearing may be scheduled at which the judge approves these arrangements. If you are not able to reach an agreement, additional hearings at which evidence is presented will be held before the judge issues a final order in your case.
Let Us Help You Today
There are numerous issues that can arise during divorce which could make your case more complicated. To discuss these issues and how we can help, call or contact Fort Lauderdale divorce attorney Vanessa L. Prieto online to request a consultation.