15 Nov About the Divorce Process
It takes two people to come to the decision of a divorce; however, it takes a team of legal experts to successfully complete the process. The divorce attorneys at Bandre, Hunt & Snider are here to offer our legal expertise and advice on how to efficiently move through and finalize the divorce process.
The Legal Stages of Divorce
To begin, here is a step-by-step look at the divorce process. A petition for divorce is written by one spouse, and is then communicated to the other spouse. The communication of the petition from one spouse to another is called the “serving process.” A petition must be formally served on the other spouse by a sheriff or process server, unless that spouse executes a document waiving formal service. Once a spouse is served with the petition, he or she has 30 days to respond. Depending on the response to the serving by the respondent, the process may continue on without a court hearing if an agreement is reached. If not, a court hearing will most likely take place which is both costly and time consuming. The next step in the process is the discovery phase which requires both spouses to disclose information about their income, expenses and assets. If an agreement of terms comes easily between the spouses, there is only paperwork left. However, if there is greater discontent among the spouses, further legal proceedings will occur until a settlement is reached or the case is set for trial. A petition has to be on file with the court for 30 days after service of the petition on the other spouse before a judge can officially enter a divorce. Neither party may remarry until a judge signs a judgment and decree of dissolution. A divorce can last anywhere from 30 -180 days, or longer depending on the complexity of the issues involved.
How to Financially Prepare for Divorce
Divorce can be a costly process. Save yourself some time and stress by planning ahead. To begin, open your own bank account. This allows you to keep your financial assets separate from that of your current spouse. Make sure this account is not accessible to anyone besides you. Even if your divorce was mutually agreed upon, this is an important step to protect yourself as well as your assets. Along with opening your own account, close or separate any joint accounts. Whether that be splitting the money or removing you or your spouse’s name from the account, figure out what works best for your situation. After your finances have been separated, save your money. This is not the time to spend any large amounts of money. Next, get your financial records in order. Organize important files and folders containing any record of financial activities such as expenses, income, debt, and other related affairs. This will prepare you for future meetings with legal counselors as well as make you aware of your personal financial situation.
Why Do I Need a Divorce Lawyer?
Divorce attorneys are available to spouses going through divorce to provide helpful solutions to the roadblocks that arise when moving through the terms of the marital separation. Although some agreements surrounding divorce are mutually reached, others are not. This is where the help of our divorce attorneys at Bandre, Hunt, & Snider come in. We are not only legally equipped to help couples reach peaceful and agreeable terms, but we also understand that tension surrounding a divorce. We help the process move along as smoothly as possible and remain objective throughout. A divorce is a legally binding, final agreement. Before any papers are signed, it is important to have a legal expert by your side to fully clarify the exact terms you and your spouse are agreeing to.
Questions to Ask Your Divorce Attorney
Here are some insightful questions to ask your divorce attorney. Having these questions answered will give you a better idea of what your case will consist of as well as who you can expect to work with.
- What is your total estimate for the cost of this case and your services?
- What is your experience in divorce cases?
- Is it more beneficial for a case to settle or go to trial?
- Can both my spouse and I use the same lawyer?
- What is your strategy for my case?
If you are in need of legal advice regarding a divorce, contact our office today.