Do You Know the Main Differences Between Contested and Uncontested Divorces in Florida?

When getting a divorce, there are two main options available in Florida. You and your soon-to-be-ex will need to determine if you will have a contested or an uncontested divorce. Understanding the main differences between the two can help you to figure out which one will be best in your situation. The best place to start is to look at what an uncontested divorce is. If you can meet the requirements for an uncontested divorce, it’s the most ideal situation. If not, a contested divorce is going to be your only option.

What is an Uncontested Divorce?
An uncontested divorce is any divorce when both parties are able to work out all the details without having to argue their case in court. This can either be done on their own (with their attorneys) or more likely, with the help of a mediator of some sort. In order to have an uncontested divorce, agreement contracts must be in place for the division of marital property, child custody, any child support or spousal support, along with any other areas of potential conflict.

Main Differences
The following are some of the key differences that you need to take note of when deciding to go the contested or uncontested divorce route:

  • Cost – An uncontested divorce is going to be significantly less expensive because there is no need to prepare for, and execute, an extensive court battle.
  • Final say – With a contested divorce, the judge will have the final say on how things happen. This can be helpful with contentious divorce cases.
  • Control – You’ll retain more control over the outcome of a divorce if it is uncontested.
  • Forced compliance – If your spouse refuses to show up for mediation, or is constantly delaying the process, you can force them to comply by going with a contested divorce.
  • Speed – In most cases, an uncontested divorce is going to go much more quickly since you don’t need to wait for court dates or going through the backlogged family courts.
  • Structured – When you go with a contested divorce, the process will have more rules and structure. This can be helpful when you have a very contentious situation.

Remember, just because you can’t agree on everything, doesn’t mean you can’t get the process started by agreeing on some key points. You can begin a contested divorce by presenting the judge with areas of agreement. For example, if you both agree that one party will get the house and the other will get the cottage, it will be one less thing that needs to be handled by the judge.

There is No Right or Wrong Method
While there are certainly advantages to an uncontested divorce, that is not to say that it is the right option for every situation. Contact the Law Office of Ray Garcia to go over your specific situation. We can help with both contested and uncontested divorces, and will be happy to provide you with the best legal representation throughout your Florida divorce.