What Documents Do I Need To File For Florida Divorce?
Initiating divorce proceedings is one of the most difficult decisions many married individuals have to make during their lifetime. The decision to file for divorce is both life-changing and intimidating.
Many people are reluctant to end their marriage simply because they do not know what documents they will need to begin the divorce process. Fortunately, you can schedule a free consultation with an Orlando divorce attorney to find out what documentation is needed to file divorce papers in a Florida court.
Read on to find out what documents you may need to file a petition for divorce in Florida.
What Do You Need to Initiate a Divorce in Florida?
The spouse who begins the divorce process is called the Petitioner. In Florida, the spouse initiating a divorce files a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage. After a petition is filed, the non-filing spouse becomes the Respondent. The Respondent has only 20 days to file a response to the petition in Florida.
A Petition for Dissolution of Marriage will outline all of the divorce-related issues that the Petitioner wants to address during the divorce process. Some of the issues that may be addressed during divorce proceedings include:
- The division of marital assets and debt
- Child support
- Child custody (timesharing and parenting)
Note: Before filing for divorce in Florida, it is imperative to ensure that you meet the state’s eligibility requirements to initiate the divorce proceedings. Under Fla. Stat. § 61.021, one or both parties must have lived in Florida for the past six months to be eligible to file a petition for divorce.
What Forms Do You Need to Complete When Filing for Divorce?
The forms you will be required to complete to file for divorce in Florida depend on the circumstances of your case and the requirements of your county court.
You and your spouse may be eligible for a “simplified divorce” if your divorce case meets all of the following criteria:
- You agree on all issues of your divorce (in particular, property division)
- Neither spouse is seeking alimony
- Your marriage does not involve minor children
In Florida, divorcing couples can speed up the divorce process by submitting a settlement agreement to the court. Spouses seeking a divorce in Florida must also complete and file a summons along with the divorce petition.
The forms that you will have to fill out and submit to your court depend on the circumstances of your marriage, including whether you and your spouse share any children.
Other Documents That You Need to File for Divorce in Florida
When filing for divorce in Florida, the Petitioner will submit their Petition for Dissolution of Marriage signed by them and notarized. The Petitioner will also submit the filing fee or a request to waive the fee.
The spouse filing for divorce will also need to prepare other information and documentation during the divorce process. Both spouses are legally required to complete a financial affidavit, which must be filed within 45 days of the date the Respondent was served.
If you do not understand what documents you need to file for divorce in Florida, do not hesitate to schedule a case review with an Orlando divorce lawyer. Our attorney at the Law Offices of Steve W. Marsee, P.A., is willing to help. Call 407-521-7171 right now.