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Divorce FAQs

The following information is not intended to be legal advice.

How long will it take to get divorced?

If there are minor children or party is pregnant, there is a 6-month waiting
period. There is a 60-day waiting period for cases without children. The
clock starts ticking when the Summons is issued. In cases where the
parties are unable to agree, 6-9 months is average.

How much does it cost to get divorced?

The cost of a divorce depends on how complicated the issues are, whether you can agree to terms for a settlement, and how organized and helpful you are as a client. It can vary widely from case to case.

What happens to the kids?

If you and the other parent can agree on where the children will spend their time, then the court will likely enter an order documenting the agreement. If you can’t agree, then you have a hearing and present testimony and evidence as to what you think should happen with the kids and why. The court considers the best interests of the kids, which includes:

  • The love, affection, and other emotional ties existing between the parties involved and the child.
  • The capacity and disposition of the parties involved to give the child love, affection, and guidance and to continue the education and raising of the child in his or her religion or creed, if any.
  • The capacity and disposition of the parties involved to provide the child with food, clothing, medical care or other remedial care recognized and permitted under the laws of this state in place of medical care, and other material needs.
  • The length of time the child has lived in a stable, satisfactory environment, and the desirability of maintaining continuity.
  • The permanence, as a family unit, of the existing or proposed custodial home or homes.
  • The moral fitness of the parties involved.
  • The mental and physical health of the parties involved.
  • The home, school, and community record of the child.
  • The reasonable preference of the child, if the court considers the child to be of sufficient age to express a preference.
  • The willingness and ability of each of the parties to facilitate and encourage a close and continuing parent-child relationship between the child and the other parent or the child and the parents.

  • A court may not consider negatively for the purposes of this factor any reasonable action taken by a parent to protect a child or that parent from sexual assault or domestic violence by the child’s other parent.

  • Domestic violence, regardless of whether the violence was directed against or witnessed by the child.
  • Any other factor considered by the court to be relevant to a particular child custody dispute.

Am I entitled to parenting time?

Many counties now provide a “standard parenting time schedule” that is available on their webpage. The amount and frequency of parenting time depends on the facts of the case and the county hearing the case. Many counties consider standard parenting time to be every other weekend, one weekday evening, alternating holidays, and half of all school breaks.

What happens to our property?

Property is divided equitably, which is usually equally. If the parties can’t agree, the court determines what property is marital (i.e., purchased during the marriage, commingled during the marriage, or property utilized/improved upon through efforts of both parties during the marriage, not necessarily whose name is on the property) and then determines what equity is in the property and who keeps it and, if necessary, what the other party must be paid for the equity.

What about my retirement?

Retirement benefits are divisible marital assets. They are generally divided by Domestic Relations Order, which allows the other party to receive his or her portion when you are eligible to receive your portion. The Domestic Relations Order is separate from the judgment and should be entered as soon as possible after the Judgment of Divorce is entered.

What about alimony?

The court considers several factors when determining alimony, (now commonly referred to as Spousal Support); however, the most important seems to be the length of the marriage, and only long-term marriages generally result in awards of support. Other factors include the ability of a person to pay and the need of the other party. The age of the parties is also a significant factor. Courts consider each parties’ earning and needs and the analysis and the potential award are very case-specific.