Divorce Attorney Serving Hollywood And Broward County
A divorce is sometimes the only way to resolve a marital conflict, but that does not mean that the stress and uncertainty associated with the dissolution of a marriage are any easier. Even divorce proceedings in which both parties generally agree about most issues may be complicated, and both spouses are likely to benefit from the guidance of a family law attorney. I am board-certified as a specialist in marital and family law and have substantial trial experience. As a Hollywood divorce lawyer, I have handled a wide variety of matters involving people with substantial assets who are seeking to move on from a marriage with their finances and future intact. I am ready to assist you with pursuing the divorce outcome that is appropriate for your personal circumstances.
Initiating A Divorce Proceeding In Florida
Before filing a petition for dissolution of marriage in Florida, there are a few administrative requirements that the parties must satisfy. First, at least one of the spouses must have resided in Florida for at least six months before the petition is filed. Second, the petition must be filed in the county where the spouse who is seeking the divorce resides. The other spouse must be provided with sufficient notice of the petition. The parties must also state the basis for seeking the dissolution. They may state that the marriage is irretrievably broken, or one of the spouses may allege that the other spouse has become mentally incapacitated.
After the non-filing spouse receives notice of the petition, they have 20 days to file an answer, either contesting the petition or agreeing with it. If the respondent contests the petition, they may file additional paperwork and receive a date for a hearing. If the petition is not disputed, the parties will obtain a date for their final hearing, at which an order granting the petition will likely be issued. Florida also offers a streamlined process for obtaining a dissolution of marriage, but the parties must be able to meet several criteria, including an agreement that the marriage is unsalvageable, neither spouse will request alimony and they have no minor children, among other things. A knowledgeable divorce attorney can advise Hollywood residents on whether the streamlined process may be right for them.
Court Orders Available During A Divorce Proceeding
During a divorce proceeding, the court may issue certain types of orders. One of the most commonly discussed issues in a divorce proceeding is property division. Florida is an equitable distribution state, which means that any property acquired during the marriage will be split equally between the spouses unless there are factors that indicate that an unequal distribution would be more fair. Another common issue is alimony or spousal support. This may be granted to either spouse upon their request, subject to the other spouse’s ability to make the payments. There are specific formulas that the court will use in determining an award of alimony, based primarily on the length of the marriage. There is also bridge-the-gap alimony, which is a limited-term payment designed to help the receiving spouse achieve a self-sufficient financial position following the marriage.
Also, time-sharing (formerly known as child custody) orders may be issued. With regard to time sharing, the court will try to provide for shared parental responsibilities as long as such an arrangement would not be detrimental to the child. There are several factors that the court will evaluate in determining the best interests of the child, including the moral fitness of each parent and the mental and physical well-being of each parent. In some cases, the child’s wishes may be taken into account, but they are not dispositive.