How Long Does the Average Florida Divorce Take?
If someone were to go out and calculate the length of time every divorce took to finalize, they would come up with an average number. This number would tell you nothing about how long your particular divorce is going to take. This is because every divorce is vastly different. Some divorces are more contested than others. Some divorces can be hashed out entirely in mediation. Sometimes their complex financials to discuss. Below, we’ll take a look at some of the factors that might mean you’re in for a long divorce.
Uncontested Divorce in Florida
What an uncontested divorce? An uncontested divorce means that both parties agree to literally everything in the divorce decree. They agree on what property belongs to whom. They agree on alimony. They agree on child custody and support.
The courts will generally sign off on any agreement that two spouses come to when they dissolve their marriage. There is, however, one agreement that the court weighs in on: Children. When a couple has minor children, the parents cannot render a decision that would not be in the best interests of those children. The court will have the final say when it comes to custody and child support. Children will make your divorce take longer.
Complex Property Issues
Let’s say your partner owned a house before your marriage. You get married, and the house accrues value as property values rise and numerous improvements are made to the property. What belongs to you and what belongs to your spouse?
While the original value of the house may be property of your spouse, any increased value that occurred during the marriage, is property of the marriage. To determine what belongs to whom, an appraiser would need to be brought in to determine the current value of the house.
The same is true for any real estate, investments, retirement accounts, or businesses. Whatever value accrued during the marriage is property of the marriage and subject to division.
Generally speaking, the more assets a couple has, the more likely it will take longer to determine an equitable distribution.
Mediation is cheaper and faster, but not always appropriate to every marriage. If a divorce goes into litigation, you can expect that it will take longer. Each spouse will be required to submit all of their financial information during the discovery period. If one house is hiding assets, the divorce could take even longer as that will need to be investigated.
When a divorce enters litigation, the court will adjudicate every decision. This includes alimony, property division, custody, child support, and more. That takes a considerable amount of time. For some former spouses, it may feel as though the divorce is never over. They will have to return to court for requests to revise existing agreements or enforce agreements that are not being honored.
Talk to a West Palm Beach Divorce Attorney Today
The West Palm Beach divorce lawyers at Bruce S. Rosenwater & Associates, P.A. can help you through a stressful divorce. We can also help you simplify the process so that you can move on with your life as quickly as possible. Talk to us today about your goals and we will come up with a plan that meets your needs.