Fundamentals of Divorce Law





Fundamentals of U.S. Divorce Law Copyright HG.org

Divorce Law Basics

The legal termination of a marriage is referred to by different names, Divorce and Dissolution of Marriage being the two most well-known. Couples seeking a divorce must obtain one via a court judgment, after which they will be awarded a judicial decree which declares that the marriage is dissolved. After a divorce has been legally finalized, both parties are free to remarry, pending time restrictions in some jurisdictions, which vary.

Divorce orders may address various issues depending upon the specific circumstances of the parties to the divorce, such as whether there is property to be divided and/or children for whom provisions must be made. Therefore, when applicable, these orders may deal with matters such as property and bill division, alimony or spousal support, child custody, visitation, and child support, as well as any other pertinent matters that the court judges to be relevant and necessary.

When a divorce action is initiated, it may be brought by either or both parties and may be contested or uncontested. When both spouses desire the divorce and are able to come to an agreement on the relevant issues, they may obtain an uncontested divorce, which allows them to proceed through the court process far more easily and quickly than when there are unresolved issues. These uncontested divorces are the most common. Quite often these types of divorces are obtained without legal counsel.

A smaller group of married couples, though, are unable or unwilling to reach an agreement with regard to the termination of their marriage and the ensuing issues. These contested divorces take a great deal longer, make it necessary to retain legal counsel, and usually require judicial intervention to come to a conclusion and obtain orders regarding the relevant issues.

Each state creates its own laws, codes, statutes and rules for handling the termination of a marriage as well as the other associated factors. Common law in each state also plays a role. Because of this, there is no uniformity, and instead divorce laws, policies and procedure often vary greatly from one state jurisdiction to the next.


Divorce Law Basics by State

Divorce Law Articles

  • Basics of Collaborative Law
    Collaboration means to work together to achieve a common goal. The collaborative process involves the spouses, their attorneys and any other involved professionals engaging in non-confrontational sessions to discuss the issues and goals of the involved individuals. The issues may include divorce, support of a spouse and/or children, how to divide the marital assets, co-parenting plans and anything else that spouses need to decide.
  • What Happens When Business Partners Divorce in Illinois?
    Spouses do not typically go into marriages anticipating the marriage will fail. Likewise, partners do not begin a business thinking that it will be anything but successful. When the two worlds collide, a divorce settlement may adversely affect the future of a business, particularly when the spouses were business partners.
  • How Can Social Media Affect my Illinois Divorce?
    We live in an age where we constantly feel the need to let everyone in the world around us know exactly where we are at all times. This is made possible by social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and other similar networking and social sharing pages.
  • How Long Does Child Support Last For?
    While individual states may vary as to how they calculate child support, one constant is that states recognize that both parents have the legal duty to provide their children with basic necessities and to provide for their needs. The duration of a child support order depends on a number of factors.
  • Apps Designed To Assist Parents With Child Support Expenses
    Decisions related to the financial aspects of child support after a divorce can be an extremely difficult and a combative issue between divorced parents.
  • The Length of the Divorce Process in Maryland
    How Long does it take to get Divorced in Maryland?
  • Constructive Desertion in Maryland
    What is meant by “constructive desertion” under Maryland Law?
  • No Fault: Grounds Available for Dissolution of Civil Unions
    New Jersey is one of many states that permits same-sex couples to enter into civil unions.
  • Developing Parenting Plans for Disabled Children
    No divorce is easy, especially those that involve children.
  • How Do Subpoenas Work?
    While a summons may require another party in the case to appear, a subpoena can require that a particular person appear in court or for other proceedings. Additionally, this legal tool can be used to acquire information that one of the party desires.

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