Frequently Asked Divorce Questions

Frequently Asked Divorce Questions

A family law lawyer Gig Harbor, WA residents depend on may be necessary for couples initiating the divorce process. While couples may manage the process without a lawyer, negotiating agreements can be challenging, and managing the legal system can be highly complex. As our team Robinson & Hadeed will share that although the divorce rate in the US has decreased significantly, there are still more than 750,000 divorces each year. Even amicable divorces can quickly lead to conflict when making decisions, making it challenging to reach agreements. Emotions often run high when two people divide a life they once shared. A lawyer from Robinson & Hadeed can play an integral role in assisting clients by asking questions and helping keep their interests at the forefront. 

What is a “no-fault” divorce state?

Washington is a no-fault divorce state which allows couples to file for divorce without blaming the other party. Typically when completing the paperwork for a no-fault divorce, couples cite irreconcilable differences as the reason. Most states offer pure no-fault divorces or versions of the same. However, some states still allow parties to claim a fault divorce, alleging that one party was the reason for the divorce. Because Washington is a no-fault state, spouses do not need to prove that one party did something wrong to file for divorce. Parties can file for an uncontested divorce, make agreements and dissolve the marriage without enduring a lengthy court process. 

What is the process for initiating a divorce?

There are several basic steps to the divorce process. Once the two parties have decided to end their marriage, they should complete a divorce petition. Typically one party will initiate the process, and the petition will then be served to the other party. The divorce papers are then filed with the court where you live. There are a few things to keep in mind. Firstly, couples must negotiate how they will divide property, assets, custody, etc. These negotiations are often the most cumbersome and challenging process for parties. Additionally, once divorce papers are filed, there is a 90-day waiting period before the divorce can be finalized. Our Gig Harbor, WA family law lawyer, shares that while some divorces can resolve in as little as three months, some can take several months to finalize while parties work through negotiations. 

What is the difference between divorce and legal separation?

Legal separation and divorce are the same because they involve parties dividing their assets and property. In addition, they will also need to form agreements surrounding child custody and support when children are involved. Divorce ends the legal relationship between the two parties, while a legal separation may allow a couple to divide assets without legally ending the marriage. Legal separations are reversible, which can be a viable option for couples who are not sure whether they want to divorce 

What decisions must be made when couples endure a divorce?

Couples must make several key decisions when choosing to end their marriage. Dividing a life once shared can be incredibly complex and challenging, and it’s not uncommon for parties to feel highly emotionally about the process. Couples must make decisions that pertain to:

  • Division of Assets
  • Division of Property
  • Child Custody Arrangements
  • Child Support
  • Spousal Support
  • +More

What are common reasons that prolong the divorce process?

Several reasons may prolong divorce, which can cause the process to become highly litigious. If parties cannot agree, one party is uncooperative or does not want the marriage to end; the divorce is contested, attempting to hide assets, and more. Divorce is difficult and often emotional for all who are involved. As a result, one party’s behavior may do sufficient harm by causing the process to take longer and become more costly. 

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