Who Can Have an Uncontested Divorce?
An uncontested divorce, also known as a simplified dissolution of marriage, is an option for divorcing Florida couples who want a streamlined process. Because it is a simpler process than divorcing through litigation, it can be far less expensive for a couple.
Not every couple is eligible for an uncontested divorce. Florida law has specific requirements for couples seeking this type of divorce, some of which are the same as the requirements for couples seeking traditional divorces. In any Florida divorce, at least one of the spouses must have resided in the state for at least six months prior to filing for divorce.
Couples without Minor Children
If a couple has minor children or if one of the parties is pregnant, they cannot have an uncontested divorce. Instead, they will need to go through the traditional divorce process to have a parenting plan and child support order developed. It does not matter if the couple’s children are biological or adopted – if there are any children under 18 from the marriage, the couple cannot complete a simplified dissolution of marriage.
Couples who Agree About the Divorce and its Terms
An uncontested divorce, as its name implies, is a situation where the petitioner’s spouse does not contest the divorce. In order to complete this type of divorce, the couple must agree that their marriage is irretrievably broken. They must also agree to the simplified divorce process.
In addition to agreeing about the type of divorce they will complete and their reason for ending their marriage, the couple must agree about how their marital assets and debts will be divided. They are the ones to make this determination, not the court. At the couple’s divorce hearing, which is brief for an uncontested divorce, the couple presents their signed marital settlement agreement. The court may look over the agreement to determine if it is legally valid. If this agreement and the rest of the couple’s paperwork is valid and signed, the judge signs a final judgment to end the marriage.
If one party is seeking alimony, they couple cannot divorce through the uncontested divorce process.
Work with Draper Law Office to Complete your Uncontested Divorce
Although an uncontested divorce cuts out a lot of the need for legal strategizing and courtroom representation that come with a traditional divorce, you should at least discuss your case with an experienced divorce lawyer before you move forward with the process to ensure that you are not agreeing to a harmful or unfair divorce settlement. Contact Draper Law Office today to set up your initial consultation in one of our three Florida offices: St. Cloud, Kissimmee, and Orlando. Visit us online or call us at 866-767-4711 today to get started.