Divorce Guide

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Florida Divorce Petition

In Florida, the term divorce is explained as dissolution of marriage. Florida divorce petition is the form filled by the parties residing in Florida who want to get divorced. Every divorce process starts when petition is filed with the court. The petition form is the pleading made by the spouses to start the divorce process.

In Florida, the person filing for petition is called the petitioner and the person on whom the petition is served is called the respondent. The petitioner serves the form to the respondent stating that request to get divorced is sent to the court in the form of divorce petition.

Before you decide to file the Florida divorce petition, make sure you follow all the residential requirements mentioned by Florida laws. You or your spouse must be residing in Florida for at least six months to file for divorce. The petition form is to be filed at the family division of local circuit court.

When you decide to file the petition, make the proof of grounds on which you are filing divorce ready. These grounds can be on fault basis or no fault basis. For filing divorce on no-fault basis, either party should state the irreconcilable differences of marriage. The court also accepts the petition on fault basis if factors like adultery, cruelty, impotency, imprisonment or drug addiction are included.

Issues like alimony, child custody, child support and visitation, property division debt payments and other family matters are discussed by the court on trail basis on the spouseís request. If the issues are solved, then the couple can file the petition for uncontested divorce, if not then they have to file the petition on contested divorce.

Process of Filing Florida Divorce Petition:

  • Before filing for petition, fulfill all the residential requirements and grounds, Florida is a no-fault state, try to file divorce on no fault basis to end the process faster.
  • Make an enquiry about the simplified dissolution of marriage. Both the parties should agree on the issues of alimony and property division and agree that marriage is permanently broken.
  • File the petition with the circuit court. Make sure that when you file the petition, all necessary information is also provided.
  • Serve the spouse with the petition. There are three ways by which you can serve your spouse. You can either take help of the sheriff in the county where your spouse resides or you can mail the form at the address of the spouse you have. Your spouse should respond to you within 20 days after the petition is served.
  • Once you get back the petition signed by the parties, provide the financial documents within 45 days. If issues of children are involved, attend the sessions of parenting plan before the final decree is issued.
  • Attend the mediation. It is the process designed to help the spouses reach an agreement before the courtís decision.
  • If agreement is not reached, the court sets the schedule of meeting to make the final judgments on disputed matters and only then issues the final dissolution decree.

The Florida divorce petition can also be filed in the county where either or both the parties reside.

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