What is an uncontested divorce?
If you or spouse has considered filing for a divorce, it may be time to consider an uncontested divorce instead of going through with contested divorce proceedings. An uncontested divorce means that there are no issues between spouses regarding child custody, alimony, division of property, etc. In an uncontested divorce, both parties must agree on all issues before they can be finalized by the court. If one party refuses to cooperate, then it will become more difficult for you to obtain an uncontested divorce.
How long does an uncontested divorce generally take?
The average time it takes a couple to go through their uncontested divorce is about 3 months, but this varies depending on how long you have been married, if there are children involved or not, etc. The length of time will also depend on whether one party wants more than just a simple dissolution of marriage. If both parties agree that no further action needs to be taken, then we would expect them to complete our process within 1-2 weeks.
How do I prepare for an uncontested divorce?
The first step towards preparing for an uncontested divorce is understanding what needs to happen before the final decree is issued. The three most important things to consider are:
Division of Property - Who gets what? Are you planning to sell your home and split the proceeds evenly, or would you rather keep the equity in your home while paying off debt? Or maybe you'd like to use some of the funds to pay for college tuition for your children.
Child Custody - How will the kids live? Will they stay at their current school district, move to yours, or go back-and-forth between the two households? What happens when one parent moves out of state Do you plan to share parenting responsibilities equally or do you favor one over the other? These decisions affect not only the lives of your children, but also your relationship with them.
Child Support- Finally, you'll want to determine an agreement for child support. In Georgia , the amount of child support owed is primarily determined by your monthly income. You're free to deviate from these guidelines but doing so could cause quite a few problems later. The courts ultimately have the last word on whether or not you deviate from them regardless of what arrangement you’ve come to with your spouse in writing or through mediation. However, having a skilled attorney who can explain the unique needs of your family to the court will often result in the court's approval.
Whatever decision you make regarding these issues affects not just yourself, but also your family's future.
Are uncontested divorces better for children?
It is emotionally and psychologically damaging for children to witness conflict between their parents. Their parents' behavior will impact them for the rest of their lives. It is crucial that they learn early on that relationships are built on trust, respect, communication and compromise. One of the biggest advantages of uncontested divorce is that it avoids tearing families apart due to adult disputes, which often cause a lot of distress amongst the children.
Do I need to hire an attorney?
Once these items have been decided, it's time to start thinking about hiring a lawyer. Even through the most amicable divorces when both parties appear to agree on the matters at hand, the need for an attorney still applies. One person’s interests usually come at the cost of the other's — and if you aren’t careful, you could end up giving in to the benefit of someone else’s interests rather than doing what’s best for you and ultimately your children. Having a trusted legal advocate on your side can help ensure your interests are met.
Our family law attorneys know exactly what documents need to be prepared and reviewed prior to submitting them to the judge. We will also provide guidance throughout the entire process so that everything goes smoothly.
Attempting to navigate the family court system alone can make it difficult to achieve your desired outcome.
At The Hull Firm LLC, we offer compassion, understanding, and strong legal support to help you move forward. Don’t wait to get help with your legal situation — contact us today.