Getting a Divorce in USA

For getting a contested divorce in USA, should have a disagreement of certain issues like child custody, alimony, property division and child support. In such situations, the court process takes longer to conclude. When both the parties cannot solve the issues mutually, they go before the court for a decision.

For getting a contested divorce in USA here are the steps to be followed:

Contested Divorce Procedures

Meeting with an Attorney:

Once you have met an attorney, discuss with him/her all the documents that will be required for divorce process. Submit those documents to the lawyer later. The lawyer will then determine what he/she feels you are permitted to, and then will prepare your divorce petition and file it with the court.

Divorce Petition served upon your Spouse:

Once the petition is filed in the court, lawyer will then serve the petition on your spouse. It can be served to your spouse by a person, by mail or by deputy sheriff.

Your Spouse responds to the Petition:

State laws in United States require your spouse to respond to the petition for divorce within 30 days. If your spouse fails to respond, you may obtain a default judgment of divorce. If your spouse does respond, divorce case will then proceed to discovery and settlement stages.


Discovery is the part for getting a contested divorce in USA. In this step, both the spouses obtain a detailed information from each other about income, marital assets and other issues that are to be discussed in case. All these documents are then submitted to the court. During discovery the spouses can request for temporary orders for alimony and child support from the courts.


Most judges will request both the spouses to come to an agreement before the final court date. The judge may order the spouses to go to the mediator. If the spouses are unable to solve the issues and come to an agreement then the discovery phase will continue. And the case will be scheduled for divorce court.


During trial, each side can put on witnesses, cross-examine the other side’s witnesses and make closing arguments. The judge will hear both the spouses’ cases at trial and will come to a decision regarding all issues.

Post trial motions:

After the completion of trial and the judge has signed his/her order, either party can file a post – trial motion for relief from the final judgment. The party has 30 days to file a post-trial motion. The other party has 30 days to respond to the motion


If the post trial motions are not accepted then a notice of appeal can be filed within 30 days of final judgment. The spouses seeking the appeal get couple of months to file the case to the local court near to the place where they are residing

For getting a contested divorce in USA procedures both the spouses should be patient for the end of the process. They are costly as fees and attorneys fees turns to be huge till divorce is granted.