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Boynton Beach Family & Divorce Attorney / Boynton Beach Divorce Lawyer

Boynton Beach Divorce Lawyer

As big and hard as it sounds to do, legally dissolving a marriage is the easy part of getting divorced. What’s hard is deciding how to divide up all the marital property (and debts) you’ve acquired over the years and figuring out whether you’ll need or owe alimony. If you and your spouse share children together, you’ll also need to work out how you’ll share in parenting responsibilities and decision-making after you’re divorced, as well as when the children will live with each parent, how custody exchanges will be conducted, and who owes child support to whom. These are big questions, and they are hard to answer.

The Law Office of Taryn G. Sinatra, P.A., is here to help with divorce matters in Palm Beach and Broward counties. Our team includes a Florida Bar Board-Certified Specialist in Family Law with over a decade’s worth of experience in divorce litigation. We’ll work to resolve any contested issues in your divorce amicably to create a martial settlement agreement that meets your needs and helps you live your best life moving forward post-divorce. When the issues can’t be resolved outside of court, we’ll be your advocate in the courtroom to make sure your rights are protected while presenting the judge with a strong, persuasive case in your favor. Contact our skilled and dedicated Boynton Beach divorce lawyers today to schedule a consultation and get the help you need with your Florida divorce.

Florida Divorce Process

It doesn’t matter if divorce was your idea or your spouse’s or if you came to the decision jointly; getting divorced can still be an emotional and stressful time. Like any important situation in life, dealing with a divorce can be much easier to handle when you understand the process and know what to expect. At the Law Office of Taryn G. Sinatra, P.A., we know what it’s like to go through a divorce with kids not just because we deal with clients in your situation every day, but because we’ve been there ourselves. Believe us when we say we have at least a sense of what you are going through right now and are genuinely concerned about providing you with the help you need. Below we do our best to walk you through the legal process of divorce in Florida. If you still have questions and are ready to talk with a lawyer about your concerns or get started in the divorce process in Palm Beach or Broward County, contact our office to schedule your consultation with our team of trusted and experienced Boynton Beach divorce lawyers.

The Petition for Divorce

The process for obtaining a divorce in Florida starts with either spouse filing a petition for divorce with the circuit court in Palm Beach County, Broward County, or wherever either party resides. Before you can file for divorce in Florida, either you or your spouse must have been a resident of the state for at least six months. Either spouse can file the petition, so long as at least one of you meets the residency requirement.

In the petition, the filing party certifies that the residency requirement is met and asserts that the marriage is irretrievably broken, which satisfies the statutory ground for a no-fault divorce in Florida. While it’s not necessary to allege fault as a ground for divorce, one party’s fault or misconduct during the marriage could become a factor in deciding issues such as the division of marital property, the payment of alimony, parenting and timesharing. Share your thoughts on martial misconduct with your attorney before you file a petition or response to ensure these matters are properly addressed at the appropriate time.

The Answer

The spouse who files the petition with the court is also responsible for serving the other spouse with a copy of the complaint. That spouse then has 20 days to file an answer with the court and serve that response on the other party. In the answer, the respondent may admit or deny the allegations set out in the petition and can also file a counterpetition with issues of their own. Both the petition and the answer will set out what each party hopes to obtain in the divorce besides just the dissolution of the marriage, from the division of property to alimony, a name change, and other related matters.

Temporary Orders and Financial Disclosures

Once the initial papers have been filed, the court will issue temporary orders regarding matters such as temporary alimony, child custody or support, temporary possession of the marital home, and ordering the parties to maintain the status quo regarding their finances and other matters to be sorted out in the divorce. The court might schedule a temporary hearing on any of those matters if necessary.

Meanwhile, each party is required to exchange financial information and documents with the other, along with an affidavit swearing that the information provided is true and complete in compliance with the law. These disclosures must be made within 45 days from the initial service of the divorce papers or before a temporary hearing is held. Financial disclosures are essential to a fair resolution of financial and property issues in the divorce, and the entire case could be dismissed if financial information is not provided, or the court could refuse to consider any request of the party that failed to make required disclosures.

Settlement or Trial

In addition to dissolving the marriage, the court will make final orders regarding the division of marital property, the payment of alimony, parenting and timesharing, and other matters. If the parties can agree on these matters outside of court, they can draw up a marital settlement agreement detailing how they wish to deal with these issues. The court will review the agreement and if approved, incorporate it into the final judgment of divorce. If the parties don’t agree, the judge will schedule a final hearing during which the lawyers for both sides will present evidence and legal arguments in support of their favored resolution of the contested issues. Following the hearing, the judge will make the final decision regarding those outstanding matters.

The attorneys at the Law Office of Taryn G. Sinatra, P.A., are resolution-oriented and work diligently with divorcing spouses through negotiation or mediation to resolve all contested matters in a way that meets the needs and protects the interests of everyone involved. In our experience, when the parties can work together to resolve their issues jointly, the results are more satisfactory. We also know that settlement is not always possible, and our team has the ability and experience in litigation to ably represent parties in courtroom hearings as needed.

How Long Does the Divorce Process Take?

An uncontested divorce can be accomplished in around a month if the parties are diligent about completing all required paperwork and other steps. A contested divorce can take six months or longer to conclude depending on the number of issues to work out and how complex they are, the ability of the spouses to communicate with one another and work together as necessary, the caseload in the court, and other factors. The Law Office of Taryn G. Sinatra, P.A., will work to resolve your divorce as efficiently as possible but always with your rights protected and in your best interests, no matter how long it takes.

Help With Equitable Distribution of Marital Property

No matter how long you’ve been married, you’ve probably accumulated a good deal of marital property and debts. These include nearly all assets and liabilities you’ve acquired either singly or jointly as a couple while you were married, with significant exceptions. Our family law attorneys can help you identify and locate every asset and make sure it is properly characterized as marital or nonmarital property. We’ll also work to see that each asset is accurately valued, utilizing the services of property appraisers, business valuation experts, forensic accountants and other professionals as needed. Finally, we’ll represent your interests in getting a fair division of the marital property, including holding onto the property that is most important to you and making solid arguments to the court when an unequal division is called for by the facts surrounding the marriage and divorce.

Will You Be Paying or Receiving Alimony?

The question of alimony or spousal support is common to many divorces. There are many different forms of alimony the court can order, based on the recipient’s need and the payor’s ability to pay, along with a host of statutory factors the judge is required to consider. If you are seeking or opposing alimony payments, we’ll build and present the strongest case in your favor, including enforcing or challenging any prenuptial or postnuptial agreement that speaks to the issue of alimony.

Parenting and Timesharing

In any divorce involving minor children, the court requires the parties to submit a detailed parenting plan outlining timesharing, custody exchanges, how parents will share parenting responsibilities and decision-making, how they will resolve disagreements, handle emergencies, communicate with the children during noncustodial time, and the countless details that go with parenting children effectively in two different households. We’ll help you create a parenting plan that works for you and meets your family’s particular needs, and if there are special issues such as domestic violence or substance abuse that could impact parenting and timesharing, we’ll be sure those matters are brought up and dealt with appropriately in court.

Child Support in the Children’s Best Interests

Child support is initially calculated according to a specific, complex formula set out in Florida law, but courts can deviate from the formula amount up or down when convinced it would be in the children’s best interests to do so. Our child support experts can walk you through the complicated Florida Child Support Guidelines to make sure both you and your spouse are accurately reporting income and expenses for a fair guidelines amount. If either of you are seeking or opposing a deviation from the guidelines amount, we’ll work through negotiations, mediation or courtroom litigation to ensure a result that meets your needs fairly and is truly in the best interests of your kids.

The Help You Need for Divorce on Your Terms

It’s not uncommon for couples to mutually agree that the marriage is broken and divorce is appropriate. They might also agree in principle on how marital property should be divided, whether or how alimony should be paid, and how to handle children’s issues. Too often, however, couples who start off with the best of intentions to resolve their divorce amicably find the process goes off the rails once they get into the details. The Law Office of Taryn G. Sinatra, P.A., can help you keep an uncontested divorce stay uncontested by providing practical advice and skillful assistance to negotiate and draft all required property settlement agreements and parenting plans. If your divorce is contested, financially complex, or emotionally difficult, you’ll find us to be strong advocates in your corner with your best interests at heart and the skills and experience to help you get the best result that meets your needs and your children’s needs.

Contact the Law Office of Taryn G. Sinatra, P.A., Today

The Law Office of Taryn G. Sinatra, P.A. is here for you with affordable, high-quality legal help with dissolution of marriage in Broward and Palm Beach County. Call our experienced Boynton Beach divorce lawyers today to discuss your needs and concerns with a Board-Certified specialist in family law.

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