What is a contested divorce in Alabama & how does it work? In Alabama a contested divorce is when both parties cannot come to an agreement and either one or both parties dispute the divorce. In contrast, an uncontested divorce in Jefferson County is where both parties come to an agreement before filing for the divorce. There are a variety of reasons that a divorce may be contested. One of the more common reasons for a contested divorce is when the spouses cannot agree on how to divide assets. It is very common for couples to not agree on who gets the house, the cars, the pets, etc. This results in a contested divorce where both couples are fighting for their rights to personal property from the marriage. Another reason that a divorce may be contested is when the spouses cannot agree on alimony. Alimony is a very complex legal issue and can be very expensive and time consuming to decide in a contested divorce in Alabaster, or anywhere else in Alabama.
Custody of children in a divorce is often a highly contested issue. Along with custody, child support, and visitation are also highly contested issues during a divorce. This comes as no surprise as this is a very sensitive subject during a divorce. It must be decided where the children will live, who will be the main caretaker of the children and when and how often each parent will see the children. Deciding on how much is needed to be paid to cover the daily needs of the children is also a commonly contested issue in a divorce in Montgomery County. Another fairly common reason that a divorce may be contested in Alabama is when one spouse wants to file for a divorce but does not know where the other spouse is. If the spouse is not able to be reached or found, then the divorce then becomes contested.
In the case of a contested divorce, it is very important to have an experienced Birmingham divorce attorney to ensure that your rights are protected and that the process is completed in a timely manner. In order to begin the divorce process, the plaintiff must file a complaint which will name the spouses and the grounds for the divorce. Once the complaint is filed, the spouse will have 30 days to respond to the complaint. This gives the spouse time to find an attorney and potentially file a counterclaim. If the spouse does not respond to the complaint, there is usually a default judgment for the plaintiff. If the process continues, then the attorneys on both sides will go through the discovery process. After that there are generally negotiations in hopes to reach a settlement. If the process continues, then the divorce will go to trial where a judge will rule on anything that was not resolved during negotiations.
Attorney Steven A. Harris regularly blogs in the areas of family law, bankruptcy, and real estate closings on this website. He is always available in any of the firm’s offices or by phone anytime for a consultation. Mr. Harris tries to provide informative information to the public in easily digestible formats. Hopefully you enjoyed this article and feel free to supply any feedback. We appreciate our readers and love to hear from you!