Florida Divorce Procedures

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Are you worried about your divorce in Florida? With lots of emotional stress and serious issues, it is natural if you feel a little insecure. The only way to win a divorce is to deal with it, with reason and rationality. As you are filing for your case in Florida, you should be aware of all the divorce laws and legal formalities that are important in your case. We present here some important details of Florida divorce procedures that will help you to understand your case better.

Dissolution of Marriage in Florida

In Florida, divorce is known as Dissolution of Marriage. This is a no fault divorce state and hence, there is no need to point out any faults to procure a divorce decree. It is sufficient if one of the divorcing partners swears in the court that the marriage has been irretrievably broken. It must be proved that the marriage exists and now is irretrievably broken.

Regular and Simplified Dissolution of Marriage

While following Florida divorce procedures, you can go for 'Regular Dissolution of Marriage' or 'Simplified Dissolution of Marriage'. In the first case, you have to file for your case with the circuit court, in the county where either you or your spouse resides, or where you last lived as a married couple. Each party must provide financial papers and a financial affidavit to the other party within forty-five days of the service of petition or several days prior to temporary hearing.

Simplified dissolution of marriage are aimed at couples who wish to avoid long court procedures and are able to solve matters on their own without the help of an attorney. But there are certain requirements that a couple must meet to get a simplified divorce, which are as follows:

  • The divorcing couple does not have any dependent children less than 18 years of age (either natural or adopted)
  • The wife should not be pregnant
  • One of the parties must have lived in the state for the past six months
  • Both the spouses have agreed on matters of property and debts
  • Both the spouses must not seek alimony
  • Both the divorcing partners must accede with one another to move along the simplified procedural route

The residential requirements must be fulfilled, and the divorcing partners must agree with each other regarding the distribution of property. In this type of divorce process, there is no room for spousal support, cross examination, or trial. The marital status is terminated in a simple way along with the settlements that the divorcing couple agrees upon.

Commencement of Florida Divorce Procedure

The divorcing partner, who wishes to file the dissolution papers, must confirm that the residency requirements have been met. The venue for filing these papers is the county in which both the divorcing partners are residing or the county wherein the Respondent is living in.

Presently, fault divorces are not in existence in this state. So, all the divorces point out that the marriage has been broken down irretrievably or one of the divorcing partners is incompetent. However, when alimony, property distribution and child custody issues are debated, fault in taken into account.

The first step is that the filing partner must file the dissolution action. Then, it is essential to serve the non-filing partner with the divorce papers. As per the laws, the filing partner is not supposed to serve the divorce papers to the non-filing partner. This job is allocated to a professional process server or any other adult.

The non-filing partner is allocated 20 days, from the date of service of the papers, to file an Answer to the dissolution papers. If the non-filing partner fails to complete this process, the divorce is continued in the absence of input from the non-filing partner.

If the divorcing couple has children, then it is mandatory that they attend a "Children and Divorce" seminar, either separately or together.


The concept of Pleadings is related to contested divorce. In this sort of divorce, the dissolution paperwork is served by the Sheriff's office or the process server to the opposite partner. This Respondent is allocated some span of time to provide a response to the paperwork. The paperwork, in which the contested issues regarding the divorce are included, is known as Pleadings.

Procedure regarding lawyers

If the income of a divorcing spouse is such that it is not possible to afford a lawyer, there is a probability of Legal Aid Representation. The other route is that the court may order the other spouse to disburse the fees of the lawyer. This second option is open only when the divorcing spouse earns much less money than the other partner.

There are other Florida divorce procedures that you might have to follow depending on the nature of your case. You should hire the services of an experienced advocate who will identify the problem areas and help you take steps that will prove beneficial for your, as well as your children's future.

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