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What You Must Know About Divorce in Florida

What You Must Know About Divorce in Florida

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Published by scott james
This is an article that provides the must know facts and procedures regarding divorce in Florida.
This is an article that provides the must know facts and procedures regarding divorce in Florida.

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Published by: scott james on May 10, 2010
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05/10/2010

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What You Must Know About Divorce in Florida As in many other states Florida is what is called a “no fault”

divorce state. This means that no one has to prove guilt or fault for the court to grant the divorce. There are two grounds for divorce in Florida. (1) The marriage is irretrievably broken and (2) Mental incapacity of one of the parties. Irretrievably broken means there is no likelihood that the parties can save the marriage. If there is any dispute over this matter the judge in the case may order marriage counseling or a waiting period. Typically, if the husband and wife state that the marriage is irretrievably broken, that is enough for the court. In cases of mental incapacity as a grounds for divorce, it must be proven that the spouse has been in this condition for at least three years. There are four basic steps to divorce in Florida: (1) File a petition with the circuit court. (2) Notify your spouse of the filing. (3) Full Financial Disclosure and (4) Attend a divorce final hearing. These are the four most basic steps that must be followed to get a divorce in Florida but it is rarely that simple. Although the law is very clear on some divorce matters such as residency requirements, financial disclosures and notification, the statutes are much less transparent regarding child custody, child support, alimony, distribution of assets and other matters. There are two basic types of divorce in Florida: (1) Divorce without minor children and (2) Divorce with minor children. As you might expect divorce without children is the much simpler of the two. In these cases the parties in the divorce (believe me, this is no party) can file what is called a Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage. These forms are available from the Clerk of Circuit Court in your county. In divorce cases involving minor children the forms are much more involved and the court will require one or both parents to attend a court approved parenting class, provide a Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act, Enforcement Act Affidavit, Child Support Guidelines Worksheet and a Parenting Plan. If this doesn’t sound complicated enough read on. The final consideration regarding the complexity of a divorce in Florida is whether it is a contested or uncontested divorce. If there is a single matter in the case that the parties (this is where it becomes a party, for the lawyers) do not agree on, then the case is considered contested and the matter must be resolved through the court system or through mediation, a fancy word for negotiation. Divorce in Florida can be as simple as the title of Florida Divorce Form 12.901(a) “Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage” or every decision from who gets that hideous glass top wagon wheel coffee table to how much alimony is paid can be contested for months or years to come. You may be able to represent yourself in a very simple divorce case if you can decipher the forms necessary to file (they are not as simple as their title indicates), but it is likely you will need ever increasing amounts of professional help (legal and possibly psychiatric) if the case is or becomes more complicated.

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