There is no requirement that you have a lawyer to get a divorce in Florida. The Florida Supreme Court has promulgated “do it yourself forms” to enable spouses, who cannot afford to hire an attorney, to get a divorce...
The old adage that “you get what you pay for” is never more true than in the legal field. And, while I’m on old adages, don’t forget that Abraham Lincoln is credited with saying that “a lawyer’s time and advice are his stock in trade.”
The cost of a divorce in Florida can range from less than $500.00 to over $100,000.00. If the husband and wife agree on all issues, don’t use lawyers and prepare their own paper work, then the divorce will cost $408.00, which is the clerk’s filing fee.
A person can get a divorce in Florida in as little as three weeks or it can take as long as two years, depending on the circumstances. In Florida, a judge must wait twenty days from the date the petition for dissolution of marriage is filed before he or she can enter the final judgment.
Alimony is a support payment made from one divorced spouse to the other pursuant to a divorce decree or final judgment of dissolution of marriage. Alimony is available to either spouse, whether husband or wife, but not all cases will involve or result in alimony.
The first step in the divorce process should be to educate yourself about Florida law as it applies to your case. If you have children, you should read Florida Statute §61.13 regarding parenting plans and timesharing schedules.
The short answer is that there is no difference between a divorce and dissolution of marriage, except for where you live. Each state has its own laws regarding families, children and marriage.
In divorce cases in Florida, the court employs equitable distribution as opposed to community property when distributing the parties’ assets and liabilities. Equitable means fair not equal.
The court determines custody of children in a divorce action on a case by case basis. Although we attorneys and our clients still commonly refer to this issue as “custody,” Florida law long ago abandoned this polarizing terminology.
A contested divorce is one where the husband and wife don’t agree on all of the issues. There are typically two issues which result in a case being contested…money or children. When I say money, I mean division of assets and liabilities, alimony and/or child support.
Choosing a lawyer these days is much different than it used to be. Back in the day, communities were smaller and there were less lawyers from which to choose. Most people in town knew the names of the best lawyers or knew who to ask to find the names of the best ones.