Sometimes, a marriage just doesn’t work out, and divorce is the best option. No one likes filing for divorce, and this time in your life is going to be emotionally tense and stressful. Hiring one of Miami’s best divorce lawyers can help you make this process a lot shorter and easier, letting you start the newest chapter of your life with the least stress. Here’s the process for filing for divorce in Miami.
How to file for divorce in Miami.
- File a petition for dissolution for marriage.
In order to file for a dissolution of marriage in Florida, at least one spouse must have lived in the state for at least 6 months. The spouse filing the form is the petitioner, while the other is the respondent.
For your case, you will file it in Miami Dade County Circuit’s Court. You will also file the petition together with a summons. This petition will include information about the couple’s assets, possible prenuptial agreements, and documents related to child custody if applicable.
In Florida, divorces aren’t fault-based, so that the petitioner doesn’t have to reveal the precise reason for filing for divorce. Instead, it is indicated in the petition that the union is irretrievably broken. If applicable, another valid reason is mental incapacitation for three years. But when it comes to custody, alimony award, or property division, misconduct like cruelty, abandonment, or infidelity may play a role. In circumstances where no one is asking for alimony, you agree on property division, and you have no children, you qualify for a Simplified Dissolution of Marriage.
- File the divorce forms
For starters, it is compulsory to have your petition notarized. Next is to give a copy of the signed and notarized petition to the Clerk’s office in the Circuit Court of Dade County. It will incorporate the filing fee. Upon request and based on your financial situation, you can waive the fee. After filing the documents, the Clerk’s office will provide a date-stamped copy to prove the document has been filed with the court. It is essential to make two copies of the petition, one for you and serving your spouse.
- Serving your spouse
Serving your petition involves giving a copy of the filed petition to your spouse. There are several ways to go about it:
- The local sheriff can hand-deliver the petition to your spouse. Hiring a private process server or using a non-party individual over the age of 18 is still valid. Not to worry, as the Clerk’s office will provide a list of reliable process servers for you.
- If your spouse or their attorney agrees to accept service for the dissolution petition, either of them has to complete an ‘Answer and Waiver of Service.’ Just like the petition, it should be signed, notarized, and filed with the court.
- What if your spouse is in the military or jail? Or worse, you can’t even locate them? The Clerk will inform you of alternative services. With the uniqueness of the situation, you will have to adhere to some service rules.
- Disclosing your finances
Once you serve your spouse, you have 45 days to provide a signed financial affidavit. The financial information incorporates assets, income, debts, bank and credit card statements, tax returns, and any other documentation you feel may be relevant for the court and your spouse. Filing for divorce in Miami Dade County may result in a sanction if you omit or give false financial details.
Divorce in Miami can be a painstaking process, especially when you have to do everything by yourself. Let us save you the headaches and disappointments with our combined experience and expertise at Arturo R. Alfonso. P.A. We will guide you through the legal process and ensure you get what you deserve. With the utmost respect and value of our clients, we are the best divorce lawyers in Miami! Our twenty-five years of experience, free consultation, tailored approaches, and affordable rates are some of the reasons you need to contact us for your divorce. Schedule a consultation on our website, call us, or send an email.