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Will a Florida No Contest Divorce Work For You?

07th November 2012
By Jeff Miller in Divorce
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For those considering divorce, the single cheapest, least stressful, and best option is a Florida no fault, no contest divorce. With a no contest, no fault divorce, neither party takes the blame for the end of the marriage, and the stated reason for the divorce is simply irreconcilable differences. Furthermore, the two spouses work together to create an agreement about the issues in the divorce, including custody and division of property and assets. This allows for a faster and cheaper Florida divorce because nothing needs to be litigated. The judge can just sign off and dissolve the marriage.

While the Florida no contest, no fault divorce is thus the ideal goal, it is not necessarily going to work in every single situation. To determine if it will work for you, consider the answers to the following questions.

1. Is your spouse hiding money or assets?

If the answer to this question is yes, a Florida no contest divorce is not the right choice. You need to know what your family assets are and where the money is in order to come to a fair divorce agreement. This means you’ll need the power of the court to make your spouse disclose information. You may even need experts like forensic accountants.

If your spouse is hiding assets, it is likely to become complicated and expensive, so you should speak to a Florida divorce lawyer. Your attorney may be able to negotiate with your spouse’s attorney to come to some agreement so that the deception stops. This is more likely to occur once your spouse realizes just how expensive the process is and how much the deception could cost you both.

2. Is your spouse abusive, hostile or otherwise unwilling to work with you?

If you want to come to an agreement and have a no contest divorce with everything settled out of court, your spouse has to actually be reasonable enough to sit down with you and to discuss the relevant issues. If your spouse is abusive in any way, you typically will not want to enter into a situation where you have to negotiate with him or her. You also don’t want to try to negotiate with someone who is completely unwilling to be reasonable. This would just be a waste of everyone’s time, since you’d likely end up in court anyway.

3. Are you willing to compromise?

If you want a no contest divorce to work, you also need to be willing to give a little and to recognize that your spouse has rights to. This is true when it comes to sharing marital assets and even when it comes to sharing custody. You have to come up with an agreement that is actually fair and you can’t try to use the divorce as a way to punish your spouse. Otherwise, you’ll never come to an agreement.

Remember, if you had a Florida divorce in court and litigated issues, the court would make decisions in light of fair property distribution and in light of what was best for your child. This would usually mean you wouldn’t get more than your fair share of marital property and that you’d have to share custody as well. Be realistic about what the law entitles you to and come to an agreement that makes sense in light of what you’d actually get if you went to court.

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