So you want a divorce. Not just you, in fact. You and your spouse both agree that a divorce is in your best interests. What happens next? The fastest, most affordable way to get the job done is for you and your spouse to come to an agreement so you can have what’s called an “uncontested divorce.” What’s that, you ask?
An uncontested divorce is either where one party just doesn’t show up, or where both parties agree to a divorce settlement. An uncontested divorce still has to have all of the procedural requirements of a contested divorce: you have to meet the residency requirement; you have to wait the 30 day cooling-off period; you have to allege and either prove or corroborate grounds; and you have to divide your property and decide about custody and child support, if applicable.
What are the benefits of an uncontested divorce? Well, for one, it saves a lot on legal fees. Although a single attorney can only represent one party in the divorce, an attorney can draw up the agreement and make sure that its air-tight before filing it with the court. An uncontested divorce also saves service fees; typically, the party being served will waive service and will also waive their court appearance. Only one party has to go to court and present the settlement agreement, and prove the necessary pleading and residency requirements. An uncontested divorce is also more private and can keep a lot of the “dirty laundry” from being aired in public.
You make it sound so easy, Leslie. Why do I need an attorney? Many of the divorce forms are available online, it’s true. But many of those forms are defective and making a mistake in your divorce can be very costly on the back end. It’s much better to get the advice of an experienced family law attorney who can draw up the paperwork for a very reasonable fee, rather than making a mistake and paying a lot of money on the back end to get it fixed. That being said, if you are going to try to do this yourself, I recommend the forms on the Arkansas Legal Services website.
Contact Leslie today for a free consultation.