When it comes to divorce, Florida is a no-fault state. What this means is that two people can get a divorce without anyone proving who is to blame. You do not need to prove that one person cheated on the other, failed to try to keep the marriage together, or anything else that leads to one person being blamed for the marriage’s failure.
Once a spouse is 100% certain they want to discontinue the marriage and that there is no chance for reconciliation a divorce can move forward. Even then, there are still many things to think about and discuss.
It is important to realize that things will seem to get worse before getting better. No one “wins” a divorce. The idea of winning while ending a marriage can make the process worse for you. Don’t focus on that, but instead keep your mind on the future and that everything will be better after the process is complete.
Divorce is what is best for ALL parties involved because staying together only leads to more pain and frustration. If divorce is something that you are considering, give us at Jordan Law a call at (407) 906-JLAW (5529). We treat our clients like family and we are here for you.
- What kind of divorce do you want?
- How will you try to split up assets and liabilities
- What do you want to see happen with the children?
- Are you going to ask or offer to pay the other party (alimony, or child support)?
- Are you going to ask or offer to pay the other parties attorney fees?
- Short: a marriage of less than 7 years – only alimony if court makes a written finding of exceptional circumstances
- Moderate: more than 7, but less than 17 – alimony awarded if appropriate based on clear and convincing evidence after considering the statutory factors
- Long: more than 17 – alimony award if statutory criteria are met
- Bridge the gap alimony – short term need for one party to get back on their feet (not to exceed two years).
- Durational alimony – alimony for a set period of time. Amount can be modified based upon change in circumstances, but length is only changeable under exception circumstances. However, it can never be more than the length of marriage.
- Rehabilitative alimony – alimony to help one party get better earning potential (for example, one party must go back to school, and they get rehabilitative alimony during that time). Can be modified based upon substantial change in circumstances, finishing the plan or non-compliance with the plan.
- Permanent alimony – alimony forever. Can be changed based upon a substantial change in circumstances.
Are you going to ask or offer to pay the other parties attorney fees?
Lastly, one party might have to reimburse the other party for attorney fees. Similar to many of the issues surrounding alimony, if one party makes a lot of money each year, while the other party stays home with the kids, the ability of parties to afford an attorney will be impacted.
In cases where there is both the NEED and the ABILITY TO PAY, the court can order one party to reimburse the other party for the cost of their attorney. This will also come up when one party is slowing down the divorce proceeding or otherwise causing more time to need to be spent on the case. Understand though, this is a very high standard to meet and is by no means the norm for a divorce.
Divorce is a difficult process and is not something to be entered into lightly. Our job is to make sure that you are treated fairly by the court system and by the other parties involved. Dissolving a marriage is a trying practice, but the most important thing to remember is that you are ending a bad relationship, and you will be in a better place once the process is complete.