Cases of people getting divorced are too common in the world. However, one might not think the process of getting a divorce is just as easy as they want to show it is. Getting a successful divorce is not an easy cup of tea. For most people divorce can be a difficult time owing to emotional distress and mental health issues, plus the additional issues of all the paperwork and what is to be done and when it is to be done. There are a lot of decisions to be made when getting a divorce. Read our article to find out some information about getting a divorce.
Filing Divorce Petition
Whether both partners agree to the divorce or not, before any couple can begin the divorce process, one partner must file a legal petition asking the court to terminate the marriage.
Grounds for divorce vary from state-to-state. Yet, all states offer divorcing couples the option to file a no-fault divorce. No-fault divorce is a modernized process that allows partners to file a divorce petition without listing a specific reason or placing blame on either of them.
Courts recognize that the waiting period for divorce may not be possible for all couples. If you request a temporary order, the court will hold a hearing and demand information from each partner before deciding how to rule on the application. The judge will generally grant the temporary order fast, and it will remain binding until the court orders otherwise or until the judge finalizes the divorce. Other temporary orders may consist of a request for status quo payments or temporary property restraining orders. If you need a temporary order but didn’t file your request at the time you filed for divorce, you’ll need to apply for temporary orders as soon as possible. When you file for divorce, the court permits you to ask the court for temporary court orders for child custody, child support, and spousal support.
Serving Your Partner & Waiting for Response
You are required to provide a copy of the paperwork to your partner and file proof of service with the court. Proof of service is a document that tells the court that you met the statutory requirements for giving a copy of the petition to your partner. If you don’t properly serve your partner, the judge will be unable to proceed with your divorce case.
Your spouse’s responsibility: The partner who receives the paperwork must file an answer or reply to the divorce petition within a given amount of time. Failure to respond could result in a default judgment against the non-responding partner, which can be complicated and expensive to reverse. The responding partner has the option to dispute the grounds for divorce (if a fault divorce), the allegations in the petition, or assert any disagreements to property, support, custody, or any other issues.
Negotiate a Settlement
In cases where the partners have contradictory opinions on important topics, like child custody, support, or property division, both partners will need to work together to reach an agreement. Sometimes the court will schedule a settlement conference, which is where the parties and their lawyers will meet to discuss the status of the case.
The Divorce Trial
Sometimes negotiations fail despite each partner’s best efforts. If there are still issues that remain unsettled after mediation and other talks, the partners will need to ask the court for help, which means going to trial. A divorce trial is expensive and time-consuming, plus it takes all the power away from the partners and puts it in the hands of the judge. Negotiations and mediation sessions allow the couple to maintain control and have more foreseeable results than a divorce trial, so it’s best to avoid a trial if possible.
The Final Judgment
Whether you and your partner negotiated through the divorce process or a judge decided the important issues for you, the final step of divorce is when the judge signs the judgment of divorce. The judgment of divorce ends your marriage and spells out the particulars about how the couple will allocate custodial duty and parenting time, child and spousal support, and how the couple will divide assets and debts. If the parties negotiated a settlement, the filing partner’s lawyer typically drafts the judgment. However, if the partners went through a divorce trial, the judge will issue the final order.