Divorce In Florida

by: Genilde Guerra

Divorce, or the dissolution of marriage, is often the most trying time in one’s life.  Although emotions are running high it is important to recognize the need to protect yourself legally during this course, and seek counsel.  You want to find a lawyer that supports you and does not add to your mounting stress.

In Florida, unlike other states, the married parties can obtain a, “no fault” divorce by stating that their marriage is irretrievably broken, thus neither party is burdened with providing evidence that the other party is to blame for the divorce.  By working with your lawyer a Settlement Agreement can be reached out of court. Your lawyer will work with you to draft your Settlement Agreement which will address, but not be limited to: child custody, division of property, ownership of the marital home, and tax claims.  It must be noted that Florida Statues are already in place regarding child support payment guidelines based on a parent’s ability to support his/her child(ren).  If a Settlement Agreement is reached your divorce can be processed faster, and you can begin to start your new life!

Your lawyer acts on behalf of your best interest when meeting with the other party’s lawyer to negotiate the Settlement Agreement.  If an agreement is not met through this out-of-court negotiation then your lawyer will represent you in court.  During court your lawyer will provide witnesses and other materials to the judge that corroborate with your requests.  If there is an issue of child(ren) custody the judge will always rule in the best interest of the child(ren).

Florida operates under the principle of Equitable Distribution in regards to property.  The practice of this principle does not mean that all property will be distributed evenly between the two parties but that they will be split according to equities—or dispersed by what is fair and reasonable.  Your lawyer will negotiate on your behalf what is fair and what you deserve.  In some cases you will need to allocate an accountant’s assistance in addition to your lawyer to look over annuities and what tax deductions you can claim.  Your lawyer can suggest an accountant if you do not already have one.

In extreme cases like spousal abuse you should seek help from the police and report the crime.  At your request your lawyer will appear before a judge to obtain a restraining order, which prohibits the abusive party from being in the same vicinity of the abused.

Finding the right lawyer for you is immensely helpful during this difficult time.  Your lawyer will help you recognize what you are entitled to and clean up the resulting mess of a divorce as well as expedite the process that could otherwise be lengthy and complex.

Disclaimer: The hiring of a Lawyer is an important decision which should not be solely based on this article alone. Before hiring an attorney, be sure to verify information regarding their experience and qualifications.