Just like there are a near-infinite variety of marriages, there are numerous different types of divorces. Some divorces are a result of one spouse having an affair while others end because the couple simply grows apart. The end of their marriage comes as a total shock to some spouses while others have known it was coming for years. If you are in a situation where you and your spouse are not on the same page about how you want to end your marriage and move on with your life, you may be facing a contested divorce. Contested divorces are much more complicated and time consuming than uncontested divorces and individuals undergoing this type of divorce are strongly encouraged to hire an attorney.
Contested Divorce vs. Uncontested Divorce
Couples who agree on issues such as property and debt division, the allocation of parental responsibilities, parenting time, child support, and spousal maintenance generally do not have to go through numerous court hearings or extensive legal negotiations in order to end their marriage. The Court’s main purpose when it comes to divorce is to make rulings about issues on which couples disagree. There is usually no need for far-reaching court involvement when couples are willing to cooperate and compromise.
If one or both spouses dispute some aspect of their divorce and cannot come to a compromise or agreement, the couple will probably be facing a contested divorce. An individual who wishes to divorce his or her spouse will need to first prepare and file the divorce petition. This is the legal document which formerly requests the divorce. The person’s attorney then engages in the “discovery” portion of the divorce process which involves gathering information about each spouse’s financial situation. Then there are pre-trial legal motions and hearings. During this time, the attorneys will also attempt to negotiate a settlement.
In the large majority of divorces, couples are able to come to an agreement and avoid going to trial. However, there are some cases when even with the help of legal counsel, divorcing couples cannot agree on divorce issues. During a trial, each side will present arguments, evidence, and, if applicable, witnesses. Their attorneys will question and cross-examine these witnesses and then present closing arguments. At the conclusion of the trial, the judge will issue a final order including his or her decisions about the disputed issues.
Kane County Family Law Attorneys Ready to Help
If you suspect your divorce will be contested, you need an attorney who knows the law and is prepared to fight for your wishes. To speak with an experienced St. Charles divorce lawyer at Bochte, Kuzniar & Navigato, P.C., call 630-377-7770 today.