Common Questions From Spouses Petitioning Divorce

Divorce Lawyers Rockville, MD

When spouses realize it is finally time to petition a divorce, they may be overwhelmed with questions about what to expect, what certain legal terminology means, and how long the entire process may take. It can be helpful for divorcing couples to consult with an attorney who is knowledgeable in divorce legalities, for insight, guidance, representation, strategy, and support. Spouses who want to save money and go through divorce on their own, may find they spend more time feeling frustrated and stressed. Here we have listed a few common questions parting spouses may ask an attorney during a consultation:

Q: What does it mean if the divorce is uncontested?

A: Not all spouses that enter divorce agree that it is the right decision. An uncontested divorce simply means that both spouses agree to the divorce, and that there is no opposition to the decision. The spouses have agreed to negotiate terms for the settlement, including things like debt division, child custody, alimony, property, and more. When there is a mutual agreement and each spouse is willing to participate in the process, this may also be referred to as a consent divorce.

Q: Do all states recognize a “no-fault” divorce?

A: Currently, all states in America have passed laws that permit divorce when at least one spouse no longer desires to be married to the other. In previous times, the only route a person could get a divorce was if he or she proved the other spouse had committed something unjust within the marriage. For example, one spouse may have to gather evidence that their partner had cheated, been abusive, was sent to prison for felony charges, or were deemed mentally unstable. As you can imagine, this used to make it quite difficult to exit marriages that were simply no longer working and not due to any specific incidents.

Q: Are there any factors that may prolong divorce finalization?

A: Yes, certain elements of the divorce could result in the entire process taking much longer than anticipated. On average, a divorce may take up to a year or longer to complete. Here are a list of requirements for divorce that can add extra time. It may be a good idea to talk with divorce lawyers Rockville, MD relies on about these provisions, to see if they apply to the state you currently reside:

  • Separation Requirements: In some states, you and your husband or wife must be living apart for a designated period of time before you can get a divorce. The time requirement may range anywhere from none, up to a few years.
  • Residency Requirements: State laws may require that both spouses reside within the state before they can receive a divorce. The time requirement may range from none, up to twelve months.
  • Other Divorce Requirements: Some states may necessitate spouses attend mediation, marriage counseling, or education classes before they can get a divorce. However, the issues related to the petition for marriage and whether one spouse has been abusive towards the other, are likely to be taken into consideration.

Thanks to The Law Office of Daniel J. Wright for their insight into family law and common questions about divorce.