When to file a Hague application

On behalf of Furr & Cohen, P.A. posted in Child Custody on Sunday, July 10, 2016.
There exists no sure-fire gauge of how long a divorce will take. Some divorces take years to completely finalize and others take as little as a couple of months. Outside of custody arrangements, divorce is the last real chance for you and your spouse to work together and get on the same page. Generally speaking, the more collaborative a couple can be, the speedier a divorce will be.

However, when you are only just approaching the idea of a divorce, you may not know what to expect and in what order. Knowing this can help you prepare and preparing can, in turn, expedite the process for you and your soon-to-be ex.

A divorce commences with a petition, which is a legal document stating reasons the divorce is sought and how the initiating spouse and his or her attorney would like to settle financial and custodial arrangements. The attorney will file with the court. You have officially begun the process of divorce.

Your attorney ensures that the non-petitioning spouse is served with the divorce papers and a summons requiring a response. The spouse that is served is given a limited amount of time in which to answer. This is typically less than one month. If the spouse agrees with the petition or if he or she fails to respond, this is taken as an indication that the served spouse is in agreement with the divorce and its terms.

At this point, the couple will exchange property, asset, income and similar documents which will be examined by the court and the couple’s attorneys in order to determine how best to divide assets. This will also guide alimony and child support decisions. If the couple is able to collaborate on these areas of the divorce, they may proceed at this point with informal negotiations or mediation in hopes of reaching a settlement agreement.

If the couple cannot agree or the judge does not agree, the divorce case goes to court. We will cover the chronology for settlement and court process in a subsequent post. Your family law attorney obviously will play a crucial role in helping to guide you through the processes of your divorce as quickly and easily as possible.