Divorce can be a time-consuming process and is full of plenty of starts and stops, especially when it is a contested divorce. Understanding the timeline for a Florida divorce is important to ensuring that your rights are protected and that the process is able to move forward as quickly as possible.
As a no-fault state for divorce, the only reason you and your spouse need to file for divorce in Florida is that there are “irreconcilable differences” in your marriage – no one person needs to be “at fault.” Once you have filed your petition for divorce, your spouse will need to be notified and receive the paperwork directly in-hand from a process server.
In several circuits in South Florida including Miami-Dade County, a “status quo” order must also be served with the divorce petition. This type of order means that both parties must maintain financial and familial “status quo” once the divorce proceedings start. Status quo means that one parent can’t take a child and move across the country, for example or one spouse can’t stop paying all of the household bills that they use to pay. This order is intended to keep matters in a holding pattern of sorts until a court determination has been made on the case.
Once the documents have been drafted and served, the following steps also occur: financial discovery and exchanging documents for both parties, mediation, and trial, among other potential motions along the way. The entire process for a contested divorce can take 6-9 months or longer depending on the circumstances.
If you have questions about the timeline for a Florida divorce or are unsure where to turn next with your concerns about family law issues, we are here to help. Our experienced team of family law lawyers will guide you through understanding your options and help you pursue the best path forward for your situation. Contact us today to schedule a free case evaluation.