Divorce FAQs

Allow experienced Boca Raton divorce lawyers at the Law Offices of Theodore Enfield, P.A. to answer and guide you through all your concerns pertaining to Florida divorce proceedings.

What is the difference between divorce and annulment?

Both divorces and annulments are legal procedures aimed to end marriages. After a divorce, public records will always acknowledge that the marriage existed. With an annulment however, all public records and accounts of the marriage are permanently deleted. Further, there are specific eligibility criteria that spouses must meet and prove in order to qualify for an annulment in the first place. These may include incest, bigamy, incompetency, coercion or any other questionable characteristic at the time of the marriage. Spouses seeking to gain an annulment should also note that they will typically not be eligible for the same benefits as spouses wishing to divorce, such as alimony and spousal support. To determine if a divorce or annulment is best for your family, you should contact a divorce lawyer in Boca Raton.

Are divorce and marriage dissolution the same thing?

Divorce and marriage dissolution are not the same thing. Both processes end marriages and leave permanent public records that the marriage did once exist. However, the procedures for divorce and marriage dissolution are different. With a divorce, a judge determines the terms and conditions of the marriage separation and addresses all issues (i.e. division of assets and debt, child custody arrangements, alimony etc.). Meanwhile, a marriage dissolution allows a judge to review and approve terms and conditions that the married couples agrees upon and recommends. Spouses seeking to gain a marriage dissolution are typically able to work together and agree on divorce issues. It is best to contact a Boca Raton divorce attorney if you are torn between a divorce and a marriage dissolution.

Do I need a Boca Raton divorce lawyer?

Yes! Whether you decide to get an annulment, divorce or marriage dissolution, you absolutely need an experienced Boca Raton divorce lawyer. There are many issues involved in divorce proceedings. In order to protect your rights, assets and children, you will need strong legal representation, advocacy and guidance.

What are the benefits of obtaining a divorce lawyer?

Obtaining a divorce attorney in Boca Raton carries numerous benefits such as:

  • Strong legal advocacy, negotiation, representation, advisement and guidance
  • Thorough review of contracts, policies and divorce term agreements
  • Expert counsel for divorce issues involving young children
  • Investigation into the case
  • Favorable outcomes and settlements

What happens in a divorce?

During a divorce, many things can happen depending on how cooperative the spouses are. If spouses have difficulty agreeing on the terms and conditions of the divorce, they will have to attend negotiation meetings. If spouses are still unable to reach a common ground, then the divorce will likely go to trial, in which both parties will advocate for their wishes in a courtroom. Then, a judge will make the final decision. During a divorce, issues such as division of property, spousal support/alimony, and child sharing arrangements are addressed.

Do I have to go to court when I get a divorce?

Not necessarily. There are many alternative options to traditional divorce proceedings that do not involve ever stepping foot within a courtroom. Spouses who wish to avoid going to court may consider other options such as collaborative divorce. Divorce lawyers in Boca Raton can help you weigh the pros and cons of all Florida divorce options.

When is the best time to divorce?

Most couples know when it is time for a divorce. It is truly a personal choice. Spouses may consider their irreconcilable differences, adultery, or the age and maturity of their children. At the Law Offices of Theodore Enfield, our divorce lawyers in Boca Raton cannot tell you when a divorce is necessary, but we will listen to your concerns and advise you on the appropriate steps to take when you and your spouse decides that a divorce is the right option. Our Boca Raton family law firm will also educate you on the procedures of divorce so that you know what to expect before making a final decision.

What happens to our property and debt if we get divorced?

During a divorce, property and debt is divided equitably between the spouses unless there is a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement available that indicate otherwise. Typically, courts will determine the non-marital property and the marital property. The marital property is split between the spouses. The non-marital property is not distributed.

What’s the difference between community and non-community property?

Community property (also known as marital property) is distributed between spouses during divorce. Non-community property (also known as non-marital property) is not considered during divorce distribution proceedings.

Who gets the house?

Courts will consider the wishes, needs and financial status of each spouse to determine who gets the house after divorce.

What are the residency requirements?

If you wish to file a petition for divorce in the state of Florida, you must have residence in Florida at least six months before filing suit.

What if I didn’t get married in Florida?

As long as you meet the residency requirements (see above) for the state of Florida, you are eligible to obtain a divorce in Florida, even if you did not get married in Florida. If you do not meet the residency requirements, you may 1) file for residency; 2) wait until you reach a residency status of six months; or 3) file for a divorce in the state that you have residency in. The latter may be more difficult to pursue if you do not live and/or visit such state regularly.

What if I don’t want to get divorced?

If you do not desire to get divorced, you should convey such information to your spouse. Seek to understand the problems of the marriage and consider hiring a marriage counselor to help you find a solution to these issues.

It only takes one person to file a petition for divorce. If you find that your spouse is unwilling to work on your marriage and wishes to obtain a divorce, you may be forced to move forward with divorce proceedings. It is best to avoid making decisions under unhealthy feelings such as anger and revenge. This can cause more harm than good. If a divorce becomes necessary, simply speak to a divorce attorney to ensure that your rights, assets and children are protected during and after the process.

What do I have to prove in order to get divorced?

If you are participating in a fault divorce, you may have to provide supportive documentation for the other spouse’s wrongdoings such as adultery, child neglect and/or abuse, cruel/unusual treatment, one-year separation, felonies, insanity and/or drug/alcohol addictions. The state of Florida also allows spouses to divorce because of “irreconcilable differences” which does not have to be proven.


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