The ending of a marriage is never a tragedy; the tragedy is maintaining an unhappy marriage. Period! Teaching your future generation the wrong about the value of life and love is never a good thing. That’s what comes from an unhappy marriage.
Hence, in most cases, divorce can be an appropriate solution to many difficulties in life. These days, it has become another phase of life like birth, marriage, and death. You shouldn’t regret it if you choose to be happy rather than hurt.
Moving on, the process of ending a marriage is never easy. When a couple decides to get divorced, a host of decisions are to make. This includes spousal alimony, debt, and asset division, visitation and custody, etc.
However, this process can be simpler if a couple manages to come to a mutual agreement. This process is called uncontested divorce according to the law. So, what is an uncontested divorce?
That’s what we are going to talk about. Be with us.
What is an Uncontested Divorce?
Typically there are two types of divorces; one is contested divorce, and the other one is an uncontested divorce.
An uncontested divorce is a divorce verdict where both parties in a married couple agree on divorce-related issues. None of them are fighting over the legal requirements. There is no issue left to be resolved in court.
The married couple has to meet all the necessary legal requirements before conducting an uncontested divorce. It saves both time and money that you may need to spend on court procedures.
There are still a few formalities to be done. Yet it is easier as spouses come to an end without legal posturing, constant negotiations, and court hearings. And, it also allows the married couple to decide without going a trial.
Most spouses think divorce as a long and challenging process. In truth, it can be fast and straightforward to the sorted couples who want an uncontested divorce.
Earlier, we mentioned, a married couple has to clear about divorce-related issues. The issues include;
- Division of marital property or community
- Division of debt
- Amount of any spousal support or alimony
- Custody of children, parenting time, and other parenting responsibilities
- Payment of child support
There may be more intricate issues apart from the above issues. Once these issues are solved, you can go to the court to file an uncontested divorce.
Benefits of an Uncontested Divorce
There are loads of reasons for which people go for an uncontested divorce. It allows the spouses to end their marriage with dignity. The primary benefit of an uncontested divorce is its cost.
Though the process includes legal adviser involvement and court costs, it is still the least expensive way of divorce. The lawyer bills are low, so as the court cost. The price is not the only benefit of an uncontested divorce.
Privacy is another considering benefit. Because of the mutual agreements, the couple can solve all the matters without letting others know. Then, it saves a lot of time that you may spend on so many procedures.
An uncontested divorce also minimizes the number of conflicts that happen among spouses. Since the demand is solved before, so there is no conflict left with the soon-to-be-ex.
Lastly, it allows the couple to keep more money on both pockets. This process reduces court, lawyer, process servers, accountants, and other costs. So, in the end, you can save money by not wasting it.
Eligibility Criteria for an Uncontested Divorce
First and foremost, a divorcee couple must cordial to work together to the mutually agreeable resolutions. They have to be amicable to resolve all their divorce issues that we mentioned above.
A couple should meet the following requirements to file an uncontested divorce.
- Both are agreed about the divorce, and their marriage cannot be protected.
- They do not have any minor children under 18, no matter what biological or adopted.
- The wife is not pregnant.
- Both are sorted about their marital assets.
- Neither spouse is looking for alimony.
- Both have agreed on who’ll pay the couple’s debts.
In case the couple failed to meet any of the above requirements, they must file a contested divorce. Note that, an uncontested divorce only work for a couple who are seeking divorce willingly.
If anyone from a couple does not agree and make the necessary court filing, it cannot be granted by the court.
Difficulties in an Uncontested Divorce
There are some drawbacks to filing an uncontested divorce. Firstly, if the marriage has a history of domestic violence, it means one person can take advantage. One can have an unfair advantage over the other spouse. In such situations, the deprived possibly requires a lawyer to advocate for them. Also, spouses who have children and complex property agreements may face difficulties.
If the couple has a child, they may need to do additional filing, like child support or child custody. Mostly it is not possible to proceed on when there is a child. That’s because the legal actions for child custody may call for more detailed procedures.
The issue regarding children also raises many more factors. Like, who will look after the children, how the property will be distributed, etc. There comes another difficulty when one or both cannot talk without fighting.
If the couple is not in the state to discuss anything, they cannot proceed on with an uncontested divorce. Lastly, when the couples do not believe in paperwork or not faithful to the law, uncontested divorce is not a good idea.
How Does an Uncontested Divorce Work?
Firstly, know that you can file an uncontested divorce by yourself, or you can hire assistance. If you call a lawyer, then the lawyer will not be the representative of both of you. Each couple has to hire their lawyer.
The reason is, the spouse may have their interest or ethics. That’s why a lawyer will only work for one, not both. Once you ask for assistance, the lawyer will know about the marital status and conditions.
Similar to contested divorce, it also initiates by one side for divorce. An uncontested divorce will require streamlined paperwork. Besides, every jurisdiction demands some documents to start the process.
The document includes,
- A petition for divorce
- Financial affidavits that disclose everything about each spouse
- A settlement agreement
- Proposed judgment
- Other documents that show both parties are willing to participate
Some jurisdictions also ask spouses to attend couples therapy before filing a divorce. You can take help from the clerk at the court’s office or from the layers online. In the case of the online application, you’ll find the required paperwork.
When the documentations are done, and both are agreed, you need to sign and file the documents. Some jurisdiction handles the case according to the paperwork.
Conversely, other jurisdictions call for a hearing, including the couple. The couple needs to prove the authenticity of the paperwork and signs. After you submit the documents, they check the documents. If all ok, you get a quick divorce.
Why Should You Call a Lawyer?
The process of an uncontested divorce is quite straightforward. You may do all the paperwork by own; still, you should call a lawyer. Let us tell you why!
Firstly, you will need to draft a confirmed agreement along with other documents to submit to the court. This process seems complicated for general people. Here a lawyer can help you draft all the paperwork.
Then, a layer can also help you during the court hearing. They make sure whether you are meeting the requirements. Also, they can answer any questions from the judges.
Finally, you’ll need a lawyer if you failed to agree on divorce-related issues. When anyone disagrees on the terms and conditions, hiring a lawyer will be a good idea.
Is It Essential to Go to Court For an Uncontested Divorce?
If the spouses file a marital settlement agreement, they may not need to go to court. But, the spouses have to file all the legal documents with the court. Sometimes, the court may ask for a hearing to clear the doubts.
The hearing can be either formal or informal. At a formal hearing, the spouse has to present everything from the beginning of the divorce case. Equally, at an informal hearing, the spouses are answerable to some specific facts presented in the documents.
The issues regarding divorce do not need court involvement. These can be solved mostly through negotiation, third-party cooperation, and mediation. Besides, the judgment regarding an uncontested divorce is sent to the spouse. So there is no need to rush to court.
How Long Does an Uncontested Divorce Take?
Generally, an uncontested divorce is quite a faster process than a contested divorce. If all the issues are settled, and there is no doubt left, an uncontested divorce should proceed quickly. When both parties submit the necessary documents, the court will call for a hearing.
The uncontested divorce will be granted right after the hearing from the court. The duration of the whole process changes depending on the states. In general, an uncontested divorce takes anywhere between 2 days to 18 months.
All in all, an uncontested divorce is the finest option for people seeking an end of the marriage. Of course, it is mandatory to solve all issues and paperwork. We hope now you learn that what is an uncontested divorce? Even it is uncontested; divorce can be an emotional rollercoaster for all. So you can ask for professional help.