Though divorce can be stressful, most of the process is a matter of document legwork on you, your spouse and the legal teams you each bring on board. Some divorce cases can go without the courtroom, but when litigation is the only answer to get the marital division you need, it is best to know what lies ahead.
As MyDomaine clarifies, a contested divorce timeline starts with a clear disagreement between both spouses and ends with a judge making the final calls after appeals. This process can take a few months or even a few years depending on the assets and tension.
This is where the declarations begin. Meeting with attorneys, gathering the pertinent documents and determining what you want to ask for leads into serving the divorce petition to your spouse. The better your resources, the clearer this process can be. Once your spouse responds (within 30 days), the process continues.
Both spouses’ legal teams begin the discovery process in order to highlight all assets, income and custody details necessary for the case. Temporary orders for child support can assist in the temporary separation. Many judges encourage spouses to resolve their issues before the final court date. As we have detailed on our website, there are other options instead of litigation but sometimes it is necessary to take things to trial.
Once everything is on the table, both parties go to trial to examine witnesses and make arguments. The judge writes a final order that, if both parties find fair, completes the divorce. Post-trial motions and appeals contest the final order if one party believes the ruling is unfair.