St. Petersburg Divorce Lawyers
Divorce is the legal process to dissolve a marriage. Once finalized, the divorce will set out the rights and responsibilities of the former spouses toward one another regarding matters such as the distribution of their marital property, the payment of alimony or support, and if they have minor children, how they will share their parenting responsibilities and time with the kids. Divorce marks the end of one phase of life and the start of something new, including the opportunity to date others or even remarry. Because so many important matters are decided in a divorce, it’s critical to get advice and representation from knowledgeable, skilled and experienced divorce lawyers who have the capacity and dedication to meet your needs.
With Greene & Greene, you’ll have the benefit of a highly experienced attorney and team who concentrate their practice on representing clients who possess or whose spouses possess high net worth and high income, so you’ll know we are well-positioned to handle even the most complex matters that may arise. Through our active and established presence in St. Petersburg, we have formed excellent associations with top financial experts in the Tampa Bay area; we understand how to use experts most effectively and efficiently in your case to get the best result that meets your needs. Contact our experienced St. Petersburg divorce lawyers today.
Florida Divorce Basics
The divorce process begins with either spouse filing a petition for dissolution of marriage with the circuit court in the county where the couple last lived together or where one of them currently resides. The petition must demonstrate that at least one of the spouses has been a resident of the state for at least six months, that a valid marriage exists between the parties, and that the marriage has become irretrievably broken. The party filing the petition will also state what they want to get out of the divorce in terms of property, alimony, or other matters.
In addition to filing with the court, the filing spouse must serve a copy of the petition on the other spouse. That party then has 20 days to file an answer with the court, in which the party could accept or deny the allegations made in the petition and raise their own issues they want to be addressed, either in the answer or by filing a counter-petition.
The next required step is for each party to make financial disclosures to the other, including completing a financial affidavit and turning over copies of relevant financial documents. These disclosures allow the parties and the court to make reasonable decisions on monetary matters. A party who fails to turn over documents or make disclosures in the required time can have their case dismissed or have an adverse result entered against them.
If the couple has children, they will also need to complete the Florida child support guidelines worksheet. This multi-page document can be confusing and complex; our experienced divorce lawyers can guide you and assist you through completing the guidelines worksheet as well as compiling all relevant and required financial information.
At any time throughout this process, even before filing for divorce, the parties can get together and work out a settlement agreement regarding the division of marital property and payment of alimony, along with a parenting plan and timesharing schedule if they have children. We encourage our clients to create these agreements whenever possible, as they can be more practical and likely to work for both parties than a court-ordered judgment. As long as the judge reviewing the documents thinks they are fair, any agreements created by the parties can be incorporated into the court’s final judgment. Our trained and accomplished negotiators can help initiate these talks and keep them on track for a successful result.
Of course, we understand that couples seeking divorce are not always able to come together and negotiate a workable agreement. If we can’t facilitate a resolution to these complex or emotional matters, our skilled trial attorneys will provide zealous and effective advocacy in court. In that instance, the judge will decide the contested issues after a hearing at which both sides can present evidence and arguments in their favor. Our years of experience in family law litigation help ensure we’ll put forward a strong case that advances your interests in the divorce.
Contact Greene & Greene Today
For practical advice, expert technical assistance, and passionate representation in your Florida dissolution of marriage proceeding, the family law attorneys at Greene & Greene are here to offer the help you need. Call our experienced St. Petersburg divorce lawyers today.