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Florida divorce – legal rules, waiting periods, and residency

by | Dec 10, 2020 | Divorce |

Each state follows the process of divorce in terminating a marriage. Many states call divorce dissolution of marriage in statutes. There are statutory requirements in divorce in every state. In Florida, people have to be eligible for divorce, especially if the marriage is recent.

Waiting periods & residency

There are waiting periods for no-fault divorce in a lot of states and there are residency requirements for divorce, Florida requires that the petitioner live in Florida for 6 months prior to filing for divorce. The state family law courts do not want to preside over divorces for people who reside out of the state.

Florida also enforces a waiting period after filing for divorce to give the couple a chance to reconcile. The waiting period is twenty days after filing for the divorce. However, if there are children or property involved, the divorce can take longer than twenty days.

No-fault divorce

No-fault divorces are more common than fault-based divorces. In order to obtain a no-fault divorce, the petitioning spouse (the party who is filing for the divorce) must show an irretrievable breakdown in the marriage. This means the divorcing spouse must show a substantial incompatibility that cannot be resolved. Substantial incompatibility means that there are irreconcilable differences between the parties. A no-fault divorce means that neither party is solely responsible for the dissolution of the marriage. Florida also allows a no-fault divorce where one spouse is mentally incapacitated.

At-fault divorce

An at-fault divorce can be based on one of the following by either party:

  • Acts in a cruel or violent manner (domestic violence);
  • Is a habitual drug user;
  • Is convicted of a felony;
  • Has abandoned his or her spouse;
  • Is unable to consummate the marriage.

Speaking with an attorney experienced in Florida divorce law can help couples dissolve their marriage in the most efficient and timely way possible so that individuals are able to move on and take steps forward in their lives.


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