Divorce can be one of the most stressful experiences in a person’s life. In the state of Florida, divorce is referred to as “dissolution of marriage.” Divorce law in Miami is not straightforward and can be very complicated due to all of the requirements. You may be asking yourself a number of questions, especially if there is a significant amount of communal property or children involved. But if the couple has not accumulated a vast amount of wealth and has no dependents, getting a divorce can be quite simple.
The best course of action is one that has the least amount of stress for everyone concerned. If a couple has no property to divide, children or other matter for the court to decide upon, the couple may work with a divorce lawyer in Miami to file for a “simplified dissolution procedure.”
The process takes approximately 30 days from the initial filing to completion as long as both spouses are in absolute agreement on the divorce’s terms and have no plans to contest the details.
Who is Eligible for a Simplified Divorce?
A couple is eligible for a simplified dissolution of marriage in Florida if at least one of the parties has been a resident of the state for a minimum of six months and the couple meets all of the following criteria:
- The couple agrees that their marriage can’t be saved and is irretrievably broken. In some situations, there is no one to blame. Circumstances change and couples grow apart leading to a marriage that is beyond repair.
- The couple has no dependent or minor children together regardless of whether they were born before or during the marriage or after the couple separated. Also, neither party is currently pregnant.
- The couple agrees upon an equitable distribution of the marital assets and liabilities that exist.
- One party in the divorce accepts that they may lose property if the other party doesn’t adhere to the agreement to divide the property.
- Neither party wants alimony (spousal support).
- Neither party needs to see any additional financial information other than what’s in the financial documents.
- Both parties are willing to give up their rights to a trial and an appeal.
- Both parties are willing to sign the petition for a divorce at the clerk’s office. (They are not required to go together.)
- Both parties are willing to attend the final divorce hearing at the same time.
Divorce law in Miami dictates that a pension is property. So, it’s worth mentioning that if either party in a divorce has an expectation that they will receive a portion of the other party’s pension, then a simplified dissolution is not the best course of action when getting a divorce.
What Happens at the Hearing for a Simplified Divorce?
When both parties work with their respective divorce lawyer in Miami, a hearing date is set when the couple files for divorce. Both spouses must appear before the judge at the hearing. Plan on arriving early to allow plenty of time to find parking, navigate the security process, and find the correct courtroom.
A good rule to follow is to dress as if you were attending a job interview to ensure the best presentation possible.
Address the judge as “your honor,” “ma’am,” or “sir” and don’t interrupt them. The judge will be asking questions about what was documented in the paperwork. Both parties will be expected to inform the judge that the marriage is “irretrievably broken” and can’t be fixed.
The presiding judge will listen to the testimony of both parties and render her or his decision. If the judge grants the divorce, she or he will sign the final judgment or dissolution of marriage. The parties will then receive a certified copy of that judgment approximately seven days after their court appearance.
Due to the sheer volume of divorce cases in Florida today, a common tactic of many firms is to pass the matter to a paralegal or contract attorney. Our firm takes pride in personally handling all aspects of your divorce. We have devoted our entire practice to matters related to divorce and family law in Miami.
If you are considering a divorce or have already filed, contact us today and gain the confidence you will be working with a divorce lawyer in Miami who has earned Martindale-Hubbell’s prestigious “AV’ rating, which represents the highest level of ethical standards and professional excellence.