Judy-Ann Smith Law Firm, P.A
Judy-Ann Smith Law Firm, P.A specialise in the area of Separation and Divorce.
Our team of experienced family lawyers are trained in alternative dispute resolution and employ their skills to assist the parties in coming to agreement regarding the serious issues of the division of property and assets and parenting arrangements (once referred to as custody and contact).
Our family lawyers assist parties to arrive at settlements (i.e. Consent Orders) without the recourse of expensive litigation. However if your divorce proceedings do not settle and proceed to the court we are very experienced at moving these matters through the legal system quickly, professionally and with the utmost discretion.
In Florida there is “no fault” attributed in a divorce. The only basis for a divorce is the “irretrievable breakdown of marriage”. Parties must be separated at least 12 months before applying for a divorce. Under certain circumstances you may be separated while still living in the same residence as your spouse.
Either party may initiate divorce proceedings or parties may choose to submit a joint application for divorce, in which case parties share the cost. Otherwise, the person who applies for the divorce will pay for it, while the other party will only need to sign the relevant forms when personally served with the divorce documents to acknowledge receipt of the documents.
A divorce application is a legally separate undertaking to those matters such as the distribution of property or deciding where the children shall live and the time spent with each parent and child support and spouse maintenance.
Obtaining a divorce is not a prerequisite to finalising the settlement of property or parenting orders as these matters can be dealt with as soon as separation occurs. However in a divorce the court must be satisfied that proper arrangements have been made for the care and welfare of the children of the marriage who are under the age of 18 years.
A delay of approximately 2 months occurs between filing and the date of the divorce hearing. One month and one day later a divorce order is issued by the court. The divorce order is required before you are able to remarry.