Five Frequently Asked Questions about Filing for Divorce in Florida
No one goes into marriage hoping to get a divorce. But life happens, and not every marriage works out. The family law attorneys at the HVW Law Group know that divorce can be a stressful process, which is why we want to help you through it. To begin with, here are the answers to five frequently asked questions about filing for divorce in Florida.
Q: What are the grounds for filing for divorce?
A: Florida is a no-fault divorce state, which means you don’t have to prove that your spouse cheated or caused the marital problems. Most couples simply cite “irreconcilable differences” in their divorce petition. Another reason for divorce is if one of the parties is adjudged mentally incapacitated.
Q: How do I begin the divorce process?
A: First, make sure you meet the requirements. One spouse must be a resident of Florida for at least six months in order to file for divorce here. The next step is filing a divorce petition in the county where you resided as a married couple. Different counties have different filing rules, which is why you should talk to an experienced divorce attorney.
Q: How do courts divide marital property?
A: First note that there is a difference between marital property and non-marital property. Non-marital property includes assets acquired before the marriage and is not subject to division. Courts divide marital property equitably — which does not necessarily mean equally. There are various factors that influence the court’s decision, including the duration of the marriage and each party’s economic circumstances. (This analysis is unnecessary if the parties signed an enforceable premarital agreement.)
Q: Will I get alimony?
A: Courts award alimony when they determine that one party needs it and the other party can afford to pay it. The duration and amount of alimony depends on various factors, including each party’s age and physical condition, the standard of living established during the marriage, each party’s earning capacity and each party’s contribution to the marriage. Homemaking and child care are considered substantial contributions.
Q: Who gets custody of the kids?
A: Child custody can be a contentious issue if the parties don’t agree on a custody arrangement. But ultimately it’s not the parents’ call anyway. Courts determine custody and visitation rights based on the best interests of the child. The best interests standard is based on a variety of factors, including the child’s reasonable preferences, each parent’s moral fitness and how involved each parent is in the child’s life. Either parent may also be required to pay child support.
Of course, these aren’t the only issues that pop up during divorce proceedings. Our experienced attorneys are ready to help you with any legal matters related to your divorce.
Contact Us Today
The family law attorneys at the HVW Law Group can guide you through the divorce process, from the initial filing to negotiating alimony payments to fighting for custody. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us today in Boca Raton or Coral Springs for a consultation with our legal team.