June 2, 2022

What You Need to Know When Filing for Divorce In Florida

Getting ready to file for divorce requires you to get your financial documents in order. One of the documents you will file is a Certificate of Mandatory Disclosure. Each party is required to provide documents to the other party. The documents you provide should include tax returns, pay stubs, bank statements, credit card statements, proof of any debts you may have, and liabilities. Aside from this, there are other things that you need to do to get through the process. To help simplify things, we thought it would be useful to put together a brief article on this subject. If this is something that you want to learn more about, read on as we break down everything you need to know when filing for divorce in Florida.

What Options Do Couples Have When It Comes to Divorce?

If the parties can agree to terms, there is also an uncontested divorce. If the parties agree on everything, including the division of assets and liabilities, parental responsibilities, time-sharing, and financial obligations, then our firm can draft an uncontested divorce with all of the documents necessary for filing. Once the documents are signed by the parties, we will present them to court, for review and entry into a final judgment of dissolution of marriage.

 How Does Divorce Work In Florida?

In the state of Florida, the first step to getting a divorce is to file a petition for dissolution of marriage. Your spouse is served with the petition and a summons and will then have 20 days to file an answer. Once that answer is filed, both parties will have to file financial affidavits and mandatory disclosure. Depending on the outcome of these steps, the parties may enter into a partial or full agreement, or they proceed through mediation.

If the parties can come to an agreement during mediation, we can set a date before the judge for them to dissolve the marriage. The parties may ask the court to decide issues about financial matter and/or about timesharing. The court will set a hearing for the judge to hear from the parties. Before any court date, I will meet with my client to review what they can expect and to work with them on testifying and responding to questions posed by opposing counsel. If you have a court date, it’s important to be prepared to present your positions and show that you have evidence supporting your arguments.

Which Party Pays Spousal Support Or Alimony? 

Either partner may have to pay spousal support. The court first decides whether either of the partners has an actual need for spousal support and whether the other partner has the ability to pay spousal support. After that, the court considers all relevant factors such as the duration of the marriage, the standard of living established during the marriage, the age and physical and emotional condition of each partner, the financial resources of each partner, the earning capacities and educational levels of each partner, the contribution of each partner to the partnership, the responsibilities each partner will have with regard to any minor children they have in common, and any other factor that may be relevant. Spousal support/alimony is not always awarded. It is important to contact me prior to filing for divorce if you believe that you may have to pay spousal support or if you believe that you may be awarded alimony, as we need to develop a strategy as soon as possible.

Child support is calculated using a specific formula based on the income of the parties, the number of overnights each party spends with the child, health insurance, and daycare costs. Courts have the discretion to make alimony calculations based on the parties’ income and expenses as well as other factors such as the length of the marriage, the parties’ financial contributions, and their education. 


If you’re looking to explore other means of separation, The Dorsey Law Firm has the best divorce lawyers in Jacksonville. We have over 35 years of experience when it comes to providing clients from all over Florida with legal services. Contact us today to set up your in-person appointment!


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