Contested vs. Uncontested divorce
Filing for divorce is a lot easier if you know where to begin. Before you consult a family lawyer, it is essential to have a knowledge of the basics of how divorce works. The terms contested and uncontested divorce is widely popular in family cases, but very few people know what they mean. Divorces can come in two forms – contested or uncontested – both of which bring about their unique challenges. We have some handy information to help you understand both types of divorce and how to deal with them. Don’t hesitate to consult our Henderson Divorce Lawyer to know more about divorce laws in Las Vegas.
In simple words, uncontested means unchallenged. In family law, an uncontested divorce is when the spouses have a mutual agreement about how they will handle the matters that arise with the divorce – finances, asset division, child custody, child support, spousal support, etc. Couples who have agreed to these divorce-related issues can opt for an uncontested divorce. An uncontested divorce is a win-win situation for both parties, and they generally don’t require the court’s intervention to resolve divorce-related issues.
How is an uncontested divorce filed?
You and your spouse will have to sign and submit a divorce petition along with the necessary paperwork with the family court to get a summary dissolution of the divorce. A divorce attorney drafts the divorce petition by including the mutually agreed terms between both parties on divorce-related issues. The family court analyzes whether the terms in a divorce petition are prejudicial or discriminatory to any of the spouses. After carefully inspecting the divorce petition, the court dissolves the marriage if it finds it adequate. Sometimes, when the spouse summoned by the court to respond to the divorce petition filed against them doesn’t show up, the court will pass an ex-parte decision in favor of the spouse who has filed the petition. This divorce would also be considered an uncontested divorce. Appeal against an uncontested divorce is allowed, but one must do it before the lapse of a specified time. The time to appeal against an uncontested divorce varies in each State. You should be careful to raise an appeal before the expiration of that time.
What divorce-related issues does an uncontested divorce cover?
An uncontested divorce covers any aspects of divorce-related issues. It covers child support, child custody, division of assets, financial aspects of marriage, savings, investments, spousal support, future obligations, and any other issue that may arise from marriage.
Is uncontested divorce expensive?
Uncontested divorces are generally less expensive than contested divorce because it takes less time and monetary resources of the parties. An uncontested divorce can cost between $3,200 to $5,000, depending on the nature and complexity of the divorce. Some couples agree on divorce-related issues, but the equitable division of financial assets and decisions around children requires a legal perspective; hence it increases the cost of divorce by adding to the fees of a divorce lawyer.
A contested divorce is a divorce in which the spouses disagree about divorce-related issues, and the court decides those matters for them. The matters may include questions like;
- Who is entitled to get how many portions from assets?
- Who will take care of the children? This also includes the matters of physical custody and legal custody.
- Who will pay for the divorce?
- Who will get the pets or other items of emotional value?
- Who will pay for the financially dependent spouse if they have sacrificed their career for the marriage?
- How investments, mortgages, profits, or bank balances will be handled?
- Any other issue
Many good divorce lawyers have expertise in a contested divorce. Make sure you consult some of the expert divorce lawyers for men first before hiring if your spouse has hired a divorce attorney who represents female clients only. Contested divorces can be ugly, and it will require you to hire an expert lawyer with extensive experience in contested divorce discovery and trial stages. If you are unsure where to begin, you can search the internet for divorce lawyers near me and shortlist the potential candidates based on their years of experience and fees.
The procedure of a contested divorce
A contested divorce goes through important phases while being decided by the court. These steps include;
Filing the divorce petition:
Take the first step toward filing for divorce by submitting a petition to the family court. The divorce lawyer prepares a divorce petition that includes your detailed position on all divorce-related issues. All necessary documents are annexed with the divorce petition when it is submitted to the court.
Response by the other party:
20 days is given to the other party to submit their response to the divorce petition. If the other spouse gives their response to the divorce petition, explaining their disagreement on the matters included in the divorce, the court will treat it as a contested divorce petition. The court does not serve the summons upon the opposite party. You must ensure to deliver the summons to your spouse by hand. If no response comes, the court summary dissolves the marriage as an uncontested divorce.
Case Management Conference:
In a case management conference, the court determines the scope of the divorce and identifies the list of issues that are in dispute between the spouses.
During the discovery process, evidence and information related to different aspects of divorce-related issues are gathered.
At trial, evidence and information gathered during the discovery process are analyzed.
The court gives its final decision on all divorce-related issues after analyzing various aspects of it through the rigorous trial process.
Costs of a contested divorce
A contested divorce is expensive because of attorney fees and time. A typical contested divorce costs $7,500 to $20,000 if it goes to trial. Each contested divorce has a different scope and complexity that can up its cost.
Book a consultation with our experienced Henderson Divorce Lawyer to determine which divorce suits your case the most.