How long will my divorce take?
Just like every relationship, every case is unique. I’ve had divorces finalize in as little as two months on up to one year. Tennessee law has mandated a minimum sixty (60) day waiting period for couples without children and a ninety (90) day waiting period for couples with children, before a divorce can be finalized. This waiting period begins the moment the divorce is filed. If two married people, without children, agree on every property division, debt division, and alimony (if any), then the divorce can be completed in as little as sixty days.
However, as I’m sure you know, that’s the best case scenario and not the typical outcome. Your divorce may be contentious because of emotions or the eagerness of one side, or the other, to drag out the case as long as humanly possible. This can come from either spouse or, sad but true, either attorney. I want you to know that my personal, and professional, position is that I will make every reasonable effort to work with opposing counsel to bring both parties to an agreeable solution as quickly and as painlessly as possible. If we can negotiate an agreeable solution without excessive anger and fighting, your future years will be much more pleasant, especially if you have children.
How hard should you fight? How hard will I fight for you?
Sometimes, no matter how much you wish otherwise, an amicable divorce just isn’t possible. There are any number of reasons why, it can be the fault of either party, either attorney, or simply because each party differs on the idea of a fair settlement. Just know that if any of these issues arise in your case, I will aggressively pursue your rights through the trial phase. I have had cases where a party is being unreasonable and those clients simply must have their day in court.
How much will all of this cost?
Just like, how long will it take, the final cost of each case varies. We will try to help you keep this major life change as affordable as possible, but the cost depends largely on how contentiousness the case becomes. The bigger the fight the more work we have to do in order to reach our desired outcome. For example, you and/or your spouse may not trust each other to give full and accurate financial information to the other side. If this happens we’ll have to do what is called a full discovery. Discovery consists of Interrogatories and Requests for Production of Documents to the other side. This paperwork will require your spouse to answer written questions under oath. The discovery stage is often followed by depositions. During a deposition both you and your spouse will give sworn testimony in front of a court reporter that can be used in court at your hearing. In some cases documents may have to be subpoenaed from your spouse’s work, bank, or other sources. In short, the less cooperative the parties are and the more contentious the divorce, the higher the cost of attorney fees.
What if my spouse and I decide to reconcile after we’ve filed?
This is a great question! Reconciliation is often attempted and in some cases it’s successful. If you and your spouse decide to reconcile, the Court will allow for an Order of Reconciliation. This is very important because it documents and preserves the grounds stated for the divorce without waiving (condoning) them for a period of one year. Why is this so important? If for some reason the reconciliation fails, and the Order of Reconciliation was not requested to preserve divorce grounds, your case could be irreparably damaged.
Am I a candidate for alimony?
Alimony is largely based on one spouse’s need and the other spouse’s ability to pay.
In the past, alimony was often viewed as a lifelong paycheck, paying out until death or remarriage. That is now rarely the case, except in long term marriages. There are many types of alimony available through Tennessee courts, two of the most commonly granted types are……..
Rehabilitative alimony, which allows the disadvantaged spouse time to train for gainful employment.
Transitional alimony, which allows for post-marital support for a predetermined period of time during and/or after the divorce. This type is used to help stabilize standards of living and allow the disadvantaged spouse to adjust to the economic consequences of the divorce.
Frequently Asked Questions
144 2nd Ave. N. Suite 200 Nashville, TN 37201 (615) 244-8665