Like most people, you probably didn’t think you would be saying “I do” to a divorce when said “I do” to getting engaged and then married. But hey, life happens, and often times, getting a divorce is the best option for all everyone involved, especially if the situation involves children. But although divorce can lead to a healthier, more stable start in life, the process of getting a divorce and time leading up to finalizing that decision can be emotional, stressful, and difficult, which is why starting the search for divorce lawyers early in the process is key to ensuring the path ahead of you is as smooth as possible.
If you’ve been served divorce papers, are considering doing so, or are thinking about starting the divorce process, it’s imperative that you seek professional, legal divorce advice from a reputable divorce attorney. This is especially important if children under the age of 18 are involved. For many people, this step can be scary, however, meeting with a divorce attorney will allow you to gain greater clarity on what options are best for you and how you might want to proceed or not proceed. There are plenty of legitimate questions to ask an attorney about divorce, and doing so will release a great weight from your shoulders
For some couples, an uncontested divorce is the best option, but it’s not for all. This is especially true if the separation is amicable, civil, and something both parties feel is best. However many couples make the mistake of assuming an uncontested divorce is a shortcut to living apart happily ever after, but this isn’t necessarily the case. The truth is, there is not shortcut when it comes to divorce, and assuming so will only prolong the divorce process and cause frustration.
If you’re considering an uncontested divorce, here are a few things you should keep in mind about it.
You and your spouse have to agree on every single detail
If you and your spouse aren’t on the same page in terms of core divorce issues, such as alimony or spousal support, child custody, and the division of assets or property, then it’s safe to say that an uncontested divorce is probably not for you. You can however, create your own agreement with your spouse or take advantage of state-provided forms, but it’s important ensure you completely agree with the terms presented. Rushing through this paperwork and not bothering to read the fine print can cost you in the end.
You still have to meet eligibility requirements
Even if you and your spouse agree to the divorce and the details it involves, you’re still obligated to meet the eligibility requirements in your state. These might include paying court filing fees, paying divorce lawyer feels, meeting residency requirements, and more.
Expect to play the waiting game
Many people assume that uncontested divorces are quick, painless, and easy, but this isn’t necessarily the case. For example, although the process for an uncontested divorce may be a bit more streamlined than a contested divorce, you can still expect to play the waiting game. In many states, there is a mandatory waiting period before a divorce can be completely finalized, so keep this in mind.
Are you sure you really want to give up that much?
It’s not all peaches and cream when it comes to uncontested divorces, as you might be giving up a lot more than you realize or even want to. For many couples, they agree to walk away with the same assets they brought into the marriage, but if you live in a community property state, you’re automatically entitled to at 50% of community assets, which includes your spouse’s earnings and real estate. Are you sure that’s something you really want to be without?
You should still retain a family law attorney
The division of property is only one reason why retaining an experienced divorce attorney is a smart move when it comes to an uncontested divorce. Whereas you might be completely unfamiliar with your state’s divorce laws, a family law attorney is and can help expedite the process. And it feels good to have someone in your corner!