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Dealing with and filing for a divorce in the USA is never an easy or fun process. It often involves spouses who no longer get along with each other, which can lead to a considerable amount of stress for both parties, especially when there are children, property or debt involved in the equation. And, to make matters even more complicated there are plenty of legal terminologies and processes that can be confusing if you’re not wholly familiar with them.
With that being said, it’s always a good idea to work with an experienced divorce lawyer who can help you know your rights and understand how the process will take place. Not only will this ensure that you’re protected, it also ensures that the divorce process will be as smooth as possible and can be completed in an efficient and timely manner.
This article is intended to help you understand what exactly an uncontested divorce is, as well as how to deal with your Uncontested divorce documents in the best possible way.
In general, there are two distinct types of divorces: contested and uncontested. Below, we’ll go over the difference between both types of divorce, which will give you a better understanding of the steps that are involved in each one.
What is a Contested Divorce?
A contested divorce is usually much more complicated than an uncontested divorce. This is because it involves spouses that simply can’t come to an agreement about one or more issues relating to their divorce. These disputes can make the divorce proceeding a much lengthier process and often leads to a lot more stress, as well as significantly higher legal fees for both parties involved.
There are several steps to a contested divorce which include preparing, filing and serving the divorce papers, interviewing and hiring a lawyer, gathering information from both spouses and any third-party witnesses, attending pre-trial hearings, negotiations, attending a complete court trial, as well as a potential appeal if either one of the spouses wishes to dispute the judge’s decision.
Read more about the steps involved in a contested divorce here.
This type of divorce can be an extremely complicated process. Therefore, it’s recommended that both spouses work with experienced divorce lawyers to make sure that they are fully informed about their legal rights and protected under the law.
What is an Uncontested Divorce?
An uncontested divorce is much simpler process and happens when both spouses are able to resolve all issues surrounding their divorce. This includes child custody, child support, spousal support, property division, as well as how their debt will be divided.
This type of divorce offers several benefits to spouses that a contested divorce does not. In some cases, if both spouses can agree to all terms of the divorce, they may not even need to ever step into a courtroom for a trial. However, in the event that the couple is still required to go to court, an uncontested procedure is still much quicker and less complicated than a contested divorce.
An uncontested divorce is typically much less stressful simply because of the fact that both spouses agree with the divorce. In some cases, an uncontested divorce can even be filed online, which can save both partners a lot of money on legal fees. Just keep in mind that if there are any existing issues that cannot be resolved between partners, an uncontested divorce cannot be filed.
Read more about the different types of divorce here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Divorce#Types
The Best Way to Get an Uncontested Divorce
In order to know your rights and protect yourself during an uncontested divorce, it’s strongly recommended to hire an experienced divorce lawyer to help you through the process. Divorce lawyers are familiar with both contested and uncontested divorce proceedings and will ensure that all paperwork is taken care of and filed properly.
If you wish to file for an uncontested divorce, you can find uncontested divorce forms at most county courthouses. The spouse who wishes to file for divorce must fill out the forms and file them with the county clerk by paying a filing fee and then having the other partner served with the papers.
It’s important to check in with the county clerk or your own attorney to make sure that all papers are filed and served correctly. Failure to do so could mean restarting the process and being required to pay a second filing fee for starting another legal case.
In some cases, improperly filed divorce forms can be amended at a later date, however, this is not always allowed. Therefore, it’s strongly recommended to consult with a divorce lawyer if you have any doubts on how to file or serve your divorce papers.
Once the divorce papers have been served, the other spouse must file a response in order to continue the divorce process. This often involves having your spouse sign the documents that have been prepared and returning them to the county clerk. Then, once a response has been filed, some US states may require that the couple observe a mandatory waiting period before the next step of the divorce can begin.
Filing for An Uncontested Divorce Online
As mentioned, you might also want to consider filing for your uncontested divorce online. There are plenty of websites that will allow you to file online and will provide you with the necessary forms and instructions for your specific state. Remember that these forms will be filed with the information that you provide, therefore, it’s crucial to ensure that any and all information is filled out accurately.
Then, once you receive your uncontested divorce forms, it’s recommended to consult with the county clerk or your attorney to find out how to file and serve your divorce papers properly.
Serving your spouse with your divorce papers is what will kickstart to uncontested divorce process. Therefore, it’s important to do this as soon as possible to minimize the amount of time that the divorce will take. Fortunately, in some US states, an uncontested divorce can be granted in as little as a few weeks or months.