Connecticut Divorce Process

Going through a divorce can be emotionally exhausting and legally complex. There are several documents you must file with the court. Additionally, you and your former spouse may disagree on many issues, such as property division, alimony, or child custody.

There are several steps to getting a divorce in Connecticut, but a dedicated attorney at our firm can guide you through it. Our legal team can help you end your marriage as smoothly as possible.

Initiating the Marital Dissolution Process

To begin marital dissolution proceedings, one spouse must file a summons, complaint, and automatic orders form. In addition to these documents, the filing party must provide a blank appearance form to the responding spouse.

Once the paperwork is served, the responding spouse must fill out the appearance form and file it. They may also elect to file an answer and cross-complaint. To avoid making costly errors when completing these forms, seek help from a skilled attorney during this step of the divorce process.

Exchanging Financial Affidavits in a Divorce

Once the case is filed, each spouse must disclose their assets to the other party. The court requires spouses to exchange this information so that each party can have a complete picture of the other person’s financial situation before the division of assets and debts is determined.

To complete the financial affidavit, spouses will need to gather documents such as tax returns, bank statements from the past two years, and retirement statements. Each party has the opportunity to review the other’s affidavit and supporting financial documentation and ask questions about pertinent financial information. A skilled attorney can help individuals complete the financial affidavit, gather the requested documents, and prepare answers to the other party’s potential questions.

If two parties agree on all aspects of their marital dissolution and do not have children, they might decide to sign a divorce agreement after exchanging their financial affidavits. However, in more complex situations, which may include business assets or intricate compensation schedules, spouses may have to go through additional steps in the divorce process.

Negotiating Child Custody and Support

Many married couples have children, which can make the dissolution process more complicated. When there are children involved, the parents must negotiate a custody arrangement and parenting schedule.

If there is a dispute regarding who should have legal and physical custody of the children, it may be necessary to engage a guardian ad litem or have a custody evaluation conducted in the case. Divorcing parents will also need to complete the Connecticut Child Support Guidelines Worksheet to calculate the amount of money one parent should pay to the other for child-rearing expenses.

Whenever there are children involved in a divorce, it is beneficial to involve an experienced attorney in the process. A determined lawyer can help a parent identify the best strategy for achieving a positive result. Working with a legal professional can also help spouses anticipate potential issues and set reasonable expectations for the outcome of the case.

What May Impact the Length of the Divorce Process in Connecticut

The length of a divorce depends on the complexity of the parties’ financial situation, the number of children they share, and their ability to compromise. Complicated finances can lengthen the divorce process, as additional steps may be required to value certain assets or negotiate alimony. For example, if one or both parties own a business, they may need to depose a third party such as a financial expert, accountant, or financial manager. Additionally, if alimony is contested, earning capacity experts may need to be consulted.

Working with a mediator from the beginning of the divorce can expedite the marital dissolution process. If two spouses can resolve all their issues in advance, they can sign a divorce agreement and submit it contemporaneously with the initial divorce paperwork. Under these circumstances, parties are able to finalize their divorce within a couple of weeks of filing.

An Attorney Can Help with the Connecticut Divorce Process

If you are unfamiliar with the legal system, the Connecticut divorce process can be confusing. At Dolan Divorce Lawyers, we are here to help you file the necessary paperwork and navigate the family courts with ease. Contact our firm today to schedule a consultation with a seasoned attorney.

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