Divorce Lawyer

Divorce Lawyer

A divorce is begun by the filing of a lawsuit by a Florida divorce lawyer called a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage. The petition is served by a process server on the other spouse. Once served, the other spouse has 20 days to file a document called an Answer which responds to the allegations contained in the Petition. Normally, the Answer contains a Counterclaim which countersues the original spouse for a dissolution of marriage.

Both parties have a legal duty to file financial affidavits which give full disclosure of a party?s income, assets, debts, and financial obligations when they are going through a divorce. Both parties also have to give full financial disclosure by providing tax returns, account statements, income statements, and business records to the opposing side. As your Florida divorce lawyer, I will help you with the preparation of these documents

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In a divorce, both parties have the ability to conduct discovery on the other party. Methods of doing this include Requests for Production of Documents, Interrogatories, Requests for Admissions, issuing subpoenas, and the taking of depositions.

As your Florida divorce lawyer, I can file Motions which ask judge to grant temporary relief for matters such as custody, child support, alimony, exclusive

use of the marital home, and attorney fees. However, all judges require the parties to attempt to mediate these issues before allowing a hearing to be set.

Mediation is a process where the parties attempt to reach an agreement with the assistance of an impartial neutral third party. The mediator does not make any decisions, but only attempts to get the parties to enter into a Marital Settlement

Agreement. If the parties are able to reach an agreement, the judge will approve the agreement and enter a Final Judgment which incorporates the agreement into the Final Judgment. This way the agreement is no longer just a private contract, but a court order that can be punished by a Judicial Order of Contempt.

If the parties are unable to reach a settlement, then the case will be set for

a trial before the judge. Parties are not entitled to jury trials in family law cases. However, the same rules of evidence apply at a divorce trial as any other civil case. The judge will then enter a Final Judgment which legally dissolves the marriage and governs the division of the assets, establishes custody, visitation, and child support. It is important that your Florida divorce lawyer is

familiar with the Florida Rules of Evidence and Civil Procedure. If either party thinks that the judge made a legal mistake during the trial or the judge abused his discretion, that party can file an appeal to the appellate court for review. If the appellate court reverses the lower court?s ruling, it can send the case back to the original trial judge.