Finding the right Florida divorce help is easier than ever before – our team will set you down the path to winning your divorce case and getting you what you deserve. Divorce is never easy for anyone involved, including the extended families of each of the parties. Knowing how to navigate the divorce process and get the right type of Florida divorce help can be a terrifying prospect. That is why we offer 100% free consultations, so that you can find out why our team is the best choice when it comes to filing a Florida divorce case.
Get the Florida Divorce Help You Deserve
It’s true that Florida’s divorce laws are some of the most tricky and confusing of all divorce laws in the entire country. Part of that is due to recent changes in Florida’s divorce statutes. Laws have been modified that have been in place for decades. But you can rest assured that our team of expert Florida divorce attorneys understand these changes and use them to clients’ advantages all the time. Whether you need help with an easy uncontested divorce, or you anticipate a contested divorce battle over issues such as alimony, child support, property distribution, or child custody, our team is trial tested and they can battle through any situation you may be facing. There is a reason why literally hundreds of people in Florida contact us each and every day – find out by speaking with one of our expert Florida divorce lawyers today.
Grounds for Divorce in Florida
Florida, along with virtually every other state in the Union, is what is known as a “no-fault” divorce state. This means that it is not necessary to find fault in one or both parties (such as adultery, abandonment, mental cruelty, etc.), to obtain a divorce. This is a positive thing because it keeps the divorce process shorter and takes out some of the emotional battles that people otherwise would waste their time and money trying to prove. A no-fault Florida divorce is a divorce based on “irreconcilable differences.” This means that both parties can agree that irreconcilable differences have caused an irretrievable breakdown of the marriage and future efforts at reconciliation would not be in the families’ best interests.
As long as both parties agree that they should be divorced on grounds of irreconcilable differences, they can follow through with a no-fault divorce. Another requirement is that at least one of the married parties must live in Florida for at least the last 6-months prior to filing a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage (a Florida divorce petition). Once these requirements are met, you can be divorced in as little as 20-days under Florida divorce law. Of course, many different details go into this process so it is always wise to seek proper Florida divorce help and advice first.
Uncontested vs. Contested Divorce in Florida
There are essentially two-types of divorces in Florida: an uncontested divorce and a contested divorce. Knowing the difference between the two can save you a lot of money in legal fees, a lot of time in going to court, and a lot of heartache by not dragging out the process any longer than it needs to go. Our team of expert Florida divorce attorneys is here to turn your potential contested divorce battle into an uncontested divorce proceeding through mediation whenever possible.
Uncontested Divorce Help
An uncontested divorce is where both parties to the marriage decide that they would like to end the marriage on amicable terms rather than fight it out in court and have a judge decide their fate. Obviously, this saves a lot of time and money because the most expensive and time consuming parts of a divorce revolve around preparing and fighting in court. Our experienced Florida divorce attorneys know that mediating conflict within divorces is more than just putting out fires, it’s avoiding them altogether. The best first step to working towards an amicable uncontested divorce is making a priority list of what you need and what you want out of your divorce and getting the Florida divorce help and advice that you need to get there while avoiding the battlefield.
Contested Divorce Help
While it is nice to think that it’s possible to work out your divorce amicably, in some instances, emotions are running too high to get you and your spouse through it without a fight. The fight may be over child custody or property division, and these issues can turn what could be an uncontested matter into a disagreement that forces you into court. With highly trained Florida divorce attorneys on your side, you have the opportunity to get what you deserve. When one spouse believes that they should have custody of the children, a bigger portion of the savings, or the marital home, disagreement can quickly turn into a battle royale. This is when it pays to have the right Florida divorce advice to put you on the path to getting you exactly what you deserve.
Child Custody Help in Florida Divorce Cases
During a divorce, nothing fuels the fire for a battle more than contested child custody issues. Florida divorce laws decide child custody issues on a standard known as “the best interests of the child.” This standard involves the court evaluating several different factors including: the parents’ ability to take care of the children’s needs, the children’s’ adjustment to home, school, and the community each parent lives in.
Florida is one of a few states to recently decide to stop using the term “custody” in its decisions regarding the children. Now, Florida divorce cases involve what the courts call “parental responsibility” for the children. This parental responsibility is either awarded on a joint or a sole basis along with a time sharing agreement.
There are differences between sole and shared parental responsibility (what used to be known as sole custody or joint custody in Florida divorce cases). When a parent is granted sole parental responsibility, they are the parent that makes normal everyday decisions without speaking with the other parent. This also includes issues such as the school the child attends and what doctor or dentist the child will see for their checkups. Florida divorce judges will grant one party sole parental responsibility (sole custody) if they believe that granting joint parental responsibility will be harmful to the child. This can be based on many different factors, but commonly is done because of past domestic violence, child abuse, neglect, and other actions that have been or would be reasonably likely to cause harm to the child.
Florida divorce courts do attempt to grant shared parental responsibility (joint custody) whenever possible though. This allows both parents to share the responsibilities and the decision making power for the child’s best interests. Whether the court orders shared or sole parental responsibility, they will order a time-sharing schedule to be put in place. This is commonly known as a visitation schedule or a parenting plan. This will be a set schedule giving specific days of the week and times for overnight or other periods of parenting time for both parents. The time-sharing schedule will then be approved by the Florida divorce judge and it will be memorialized as a written court order that must be followed.
Alimony Help in a Florida Divorce
Alimony, otherwise known as spousal maintenance, was designed as a means of financial assistance for one spouse during a divorce and/or after the divorce ends. Florida alimony laws provide for different types of alimony to be paid in different situations. A Florida divorce judge will decide which type of alimony, if any, applies to your specific case by taking into account numerous factors, including all sources of income of each party, the age and physical abilities of each party, the standard of living during the marriage, and the length of the marriage, to name of a few of the important factors. Florida alimony laws are currently in a state of flux at the moment, big changes may be on the horizon. Because Florida divorce laws allow for permanent alimony in some instances, it is essential that an individual going through a divorce speaks with an experienced expert Florida divorce attorney to get the family law advice and help they need.
The types of alimony that Florida allows are: Permanent periodic alimony, lump sum alimony, rehabilitation alimony, bridge the gap alimony, and temporary alimony. Permanent periodic alimony is awarded to a spouse when a marriage has lasted for more than 15-years; there is a disparity in the income of both parties, and possibly an issue with disability of one of the parties. This type of alimony can last until one of the two party’s dies or cohabits with another partner. This type of alimony has far reaching implications on both parties and can last for decades. Because of this, speaking with an expert Florida divorce attorney is essential to protecting your rights.
Lump sum alimony is very different from permanent periodic alimony. This is typically a set amount of money that is either paid at one time or is set up over a number of months to be paid to the other spouse on a regular monthly basis. This type of alimony ends once the lump sum amount is paid off in full. Rehabilitation alimony is where on party pays the other an amount of money across a definitive period of time to allow that person the ability to catch up in their career by either going to school or relearning a trade. Bridge the gap alimony is short-term alimony that lasts from a few months to a couple years to assist the other party from going from being a married person to a single individual. Finally, temporary alimony can be granted during the divorce process to help one of the spouses during that transitional time period.
Property Division in a Florida Divorce
Florida divorce law follows the equitable distribution of property when a married couple splits up. Equitable means something a little different in Florida than in other states. Equitable does not necessarily mean fair, it means something a little closer to equal. Because of this subtle nuance, only experienced Florida divorce lawyers know how to spin the law in your favor. The way property and debts are equitably divided during a divorce in Florida depends largely on whether the property (or debt) is marital property or non-marital (separate) property.
Without a prenuptial agreement, Florida divorce law generally considers all property acquired during the marriage to be marital property, with few exceptions. This is true even if property is titled only in one spouse’s name. For example, if a couple is married and then decides to purchase a home only putting the wife on the mortgage and deed, the house is still marital property, for which both the husband and the wife own equal 50/50 shares. If, however, the wife purchased the property prior to the marriage and was the main person responsible for paying on the mortgage or there was no mortgage, the property may be categorized as her sole property and thus not subject to division in the divorce. The only way to find out for sure regarding any property is to speak with an experienced Florida divorce lawyer to find out what your rights are to whatever property may be in question.
Win Your Florida Divorce Case!
Ending a marriage isn’t easy for anyone involved, but with the right Florida divorce help and advice, it can be possible to move on without disrupting every aspect of your normal life. Whether you need divorce advice for an uncontested matter or a full blown child custody case, our team of knowledgeable attorneys is on your side, and no one wins more contested cases in the State of Florida. Don’t take a chance – this is one of the biggest decisions you will ever make in your life, it should be done the right way from the very beginning. Knowing that you have a trusted advocate that will fight for you is the reason so many people connect through us. Let us put a local Florida divorce attorney on your side so that you can get the results you deserve.
Additional Florida Information
- Florida Divorce Help and Attorney Advice Center
- Florida Fathers Rights Help and Advice
- Florida Child Custody Help and Advice
- Florida Family Law Do-It-Yourself Court Kits
- Free Florida Family Law Case Evaluation