Ver en Español
Free Case Evaluation Call Now

FOR MEN ONLY: 7 Things You Absolutely Need To Know BEFORE Filing For Divorce in Florida – WATCH VIDEO

How Long Do You Have To Be Separated Before You Can File For Divorce In Miami?

When you know, you know. 

These may have been the words you used when you explained why you were taking the most significant step of your life—marriage to the person you planned to be with forever.

Now, these are the words you’re using to explain why you need a divorce… immediately. Time won’t fix it this time; this is the one thing on which you both agree.

Unfortunately, you’ve heard horror stories about couples needing to be separated before filing for divorce. Sometimes, one spouse has to leave home and rent elsewhere. All this will do is delay the process, so you are disgruntled. 

Some information you’ve heard surrounding divorce in Miami, Florida, may not be accurate, so it is best to speak with a Miami divorce attorney who can provide legal advice about the actual requirements for a divorce. Our knowledgeable lawyers also understand the complexities of divorce in terms of issues like child support.

Requirements for Separation

In many places, you must file divorce papers after a specific amount of time has passed since the start of a separation. When filing for divorce, many states impose a prerequisite waiting period. The waiting time typically lasts between six months and a year. 

States mandate this waiting period to give the parties adequate time to decide whether they truly wish to end their marriage. Some couples do not need this waiting period and know the marriage has ended.

When you and your spouse end cohabitation, you are said to be “separated.” Either of you may choose to split. 

The courts don’t ignore economic realities. Sometimes it is simply too expensive to move out of the marital home. Even though a couple is separated, they might continue residing in the same house out of necessity, convenience, or to maintain a level of normalcy for the kids. 

It is possible to be separated while living under the same roof. While you live in the same home, you don’t do things like share a bed, have physical intimacy, or participate in many of the activities you shared as a couple after you’re separated.

Separation Period Before Filing for Divorce in FL

Unlike many states, Florida does not require legal separations (i.e. separation agreements filed with the courts), and there is no set period you must be separated before filing for divorce. These loose requirements are due, in part, to the fact that Florida is a no-fault divorce state.

Requirements to File For Divorce In Miami, Florida

Now that you know you don’t have to delay your divorce process, let’s discuss the requirements you would have to satisfy.

The spouses must meet the residence requirements provided in Fla. Stat. 61.021, even though Florida law does not specify a waiting period or minimum amount of separation before filing for divorce. 

According to Florida law, at least one spouse must have lived in the state for at least six months before requesting a divorce. You’ll have to show evidence that you satisfy this residency criterion. 

When you file your initial divorce application with the court, the simplest method to accomplish this is to include one of the following: 

  • A current copy of your (or your spouse’s) state driver’s license, identification card, or voter registration card that was issued at least six months before the filing date, OR
  • An affidavit of corroborating witness that has been signed and notarized by someone who will swear under oath that they have direct knowledge that you or your spouse have lived in Florida for at least six months.

You will file for Miami divorce in the Circuit Court of Miami-Dade County. File your application in the county where you live if your spouse doesn’t reside in Florida.

Timeline for Divorce in Miami, Florida

Since there is no requirement for separation, the length of the divorce process will be significantly truncated. Once the paperwork is filed, a Miami divorce could take as little as a month in the best-case scenario. 

Of course, only where the divorce is uncontested will it proceed at this pace. An uncontested divorce means that both parties agree to a distribution of assets and child custody arrangements


Divorce Resources in the Miami, FL Area

Miami-Dade County Family Court

Lawson E. Thomas Courthouse Center

175 NW 1st Avenue

Miami, FL 33128

Get Directions


Family Court Services

175 NW 1st Avenue, Suite 1503

Miami, Florida 33128

Get Directions


Family Court Self-Help Program

175 NW 1st Avenue, Room 2441

Miami, Florida 33128

Get Directions


Call a Miami Divorce Attorney Right Away 

Without legal counsel, you risk overlooking many essential factors. A Miami divorce attorney will manage the specifics of your divorce to assist you in getting the best possible result under the circumstances. An experienced divorce attorney can assist with matters related to marriage dissolution, including child-related issues.

To get assistance with your Florida divorce, arrange an appointment to review your case. Calling us early in the process can help our suggestions and assistance be even more helpful. 

You can lessen the strain of what you are going through at this trying time the sooner you seek legal assistance. Schedule a free consultation with Vasquez De Lara Law Group and learn your legal rights. 

Author Bio

Vanessa Vasquez de Lara is the founder and owner of Vasquez de Lara Law Group, a Miami family law firm. With over 20 years of experience in family law, she has zealously represented clients in various legal matters, including divorces, child support, child custody, alimony, and other family law cases.

Vanessa received her Juris Doctor from the University of Miami School of Law in 2002 and is a member of the Florida Bar Association. She has received numerous accolades for her work, including being named to the 2015 Super Lawyers Rising Stars and the 2016-2023 Super Lawyers list.

LinkedIn | State Bar Association | Avvo | Google