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What Is An Uncontested Divorce?

Each week I received a number of phone calls whereby people state that they wish to obtain an uncontested divorce. However, many people are confused as to what an uncontested divorce is. The simple definition is that an uncontested divorce is one whereby the attorney is simply putting together the legal documents with the correct legal language regarding all aspects of the divorce, which are agreed upon by the parties prior to the attorney being retained. As such, the attorney is simply following a list of agreed upon terms and drafting the appropriate legal documents.

Many individuals who call me about conducting a divorce do not have a list of things that they want written up in a divorce. Rather, they have a list of assets and believe that things can be amicably settled. Unfortunately, this is not an uncontested divorce. Anytime any asset needs to be divided or child custody parenting time schedules need to be made this is a contested matrimonial and has to be treated as such because at the very least settlement proposals will be exchanged various times prior to a formal settlement being reached. This is also the case if only attorney’s are used and the issues of dispute are not brought before a Judge until the final signing of the divorce documents.

While each divorce is different many times they are not as simple as one can hope for. It is also important to choose the right attorney to work with so that your issues/disputes regarding the divorce are addressed appropriately. Sometimes an uncontested divorce only benefits one party and is merely an attempt to have a less favorable outcome for the other party and avoid that party obtaining legal advice from an attorney.