lawyers in pensacola fl

DIVORCE LAW

Divorce Attorney in Miramar Beach, FL

If you’re considering ending your marriage and you live in the Miramar Beach area, then you might want to arrange for a free initial consultation with divorce attorney at the Zasada Law LLC. I'm a divorce attorney who can guide through a range of legal matters, including those pertaining to child custody, alimony support, and property division.

Representing You

I strive to meet the needs of my clients to the best of my ability. Affordable payment plans and flexible appointment availability seven days a week are just two aspects of my excellent customer service. Regardless of whether I conduct a consultation at my office or your home, I’ll give you my full, personal attention.

Requirements for a Divorce

  • You or your spouse must have resided in Florida six months prior to filing petition for divorce
  • Choose grounds for getting divorced a.) marriage is irretrievably broken, or b.) one spouse is mentally incapacitated

Do You Qualify for a Simplified Dissolution Of Marriage?

A simplified dissolution of marriage is a less complex procedure for filing for divorce. This is usually the best option for non-adversarial couples who want a quick, no-hassle dissolution of marriage.

The following requirements must be met to be eligible for a simplified dissolution of marriage:

  • you and your spouse agree that the marriage is irretrievably broken and cannot be saved
  • you and your spouse have no adopted children under 18
  • at least one of you has lived in Florida for the last six months
  • no minor children in the marriage
  • agree on how to resolve all the issues pertaining to your divorce, including the division of assets and debt
  • not seeking spousal support

If you meet these conditions, Attorney Zasada can file for a simplified dissolution of marriage on your behalf. You can expect your divorce to be finalized within 30-90 days.

Divorce Process

Filing a petition for dissolution of marriage:
If you and your spouse are unable to agree on some or all of the issues, you’re most likely headed for a contested divorce. A contested divorce follows traditional legal procedures, beginning with filing a petition with the court and “serving” it on your spouse. Your spouse has 20 days to provide an answer.

Discovery/Financial Disclosure Stage:
Soon after filing the initial court papers, you and your spouse will be required to exchange detailed financial statements to provide insight into your assets and debt.

Some of these documents may include:

  • tax returns
  • pay stubs
  • deeds
  • loan applications
  • credit card statements
  • investments and retirement
  • life insurance

The purpose of discovery is to be as transparent as possible early in the process so there are no surprises later about “hidden” assets.

Mediation:
Once discovery is complete, the court requires that you participate in mediation. During mediation, you and your spouse will meet with a neutral third party, or mediator, who will attempt to help you amicably resolve all of your contested issues. This is a confidential process which gives you and your spouse the chance to avoid going to trial. Attorneys will be present for both sides and can assist with negotiations that result in a settlement.

Trial:
Trial will include live testimony, evidence, objections and arguments from attorneys. A judge will rule on the issues and finalize a divorce decree.

Dividing Your Marital Property

In a Florida divorce, property is categorized as either marital or non-marital. Any assets (money, property, retirement accounts) and liabilities (debt) acquired during your marriage is considered marital property and will be divided equally (this doesn’t necessarily mean a 50/50 split, but rather what the court considers fair).

It doesn’t matter whether the property is titled jointly or just in one person’s name, it is still subject to equitable distribution.

For example, if your spouse opened a credit card in his/her name, you are jointly responsible even if you did not do any spending on the card.

Assets and liabilities which you accrued prior to the marriage are considered non-marital property and will remain in your possession.

You and your spouse will be given the opportunity to reach a compromise on property division by participating in mediation. If you cannot agree on who will get what, a judge will divide the property based on several key factors:

  • length of the marriage
  • each spouse’s financial status
  • desire of custodial parent to keep the marital home for the children
  • each spouse’s contribution to the marriage
  • whether one spouse intentionally wasted or destroyed assets

The division of property in a divorce is never easy, but with Attorney Zasada by your side, he will help you create a fair property division agreement with your spouse.

Who Gets Alimony?

law firm miramar beach fl

According to divorce laws in Florida, the courts will only order alimony if it is “well-founded.” To determine one’s eligibility for alimony, as well as the other spouse’s ability to pay, the court will take certain factors into consideration including:

  • the standard of living during the marriage
  • the length of the marriage
  • the age and physical condition of each spouse

Parenting Requirements During Divorce

Florida requires all divorcing parents to attend and complete a parenting class before they can obtain a divorce. In addition, you and your spouse must work together to develop a parenting plan which outlines how you will co-parent your children.