Steps in a Florida Divorce (For 2024) Orlando Divorce Lawyer
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Steps in a Florida Divorce (For 2024)


In Florida, the divorce process is governed by specific laws and procedures that divorcing couples must navigate for their marriage to be dissolved. The Arwani Law Firm is here to provide the information you need regarding the steps involved in a Florida divorce.

The following are the general steps to get a Florida divorce in 2024;

  1. Checking Florida Divorce Requirements

Specific requirements must be met for a married couple to get a divorce. Therefore, the first step in the divorce process is for the party seeking to initiate the divorce to check that they meet the criteria to file a Florida divorce. Under Florida Statute 61.021, to get a Florida divorce, one spouse must have resided in the state for not less than six months before filing the divorce. Florida is a no-fault divorce state. When it comes to grounds for divorce, the only requirement is that the marriage is irretrievably broken.

  1. Preparing Documents

The first step after checking the divorce requirements is gathering information and documentation. Organization is crucial. Documents to prepare include tax returns, income records, pension plans, and credit cards.

  1. Filing the Petition

After preparing all necessary documents, the next step is to fill out the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage and file the petition in the circuit court. The person who files the petition is called the “petitioner.” Some of the information that must be included in a divorce petition includes information confirming that at least one spouse meets the residency requirement and a statement indicating the marriage is “irretrievably broken.”

  1. Serving the Papers on the Other Spouse

The next step after filing the petition is serving the divorce papers to the other party. This can be done in several ways, including by a process server, certified mail, or law enforcement.

  1. Responding to the Petition

In Florida, the other spouse, also called the respondent, has 20 days from when they are served with the papers to respond. The answer includes what the respondent agrees and disagrees with. The respondent can also file, in addition to filing an answer, a counter-petition. A counter-petition raises additional issues. If the respondent files a counter-petition, the petitioner must file an answer.

  1. Mandatory Disclosure

In Florida, spouses must automatically provide a set of financial disclosure documents to the other spouse shortly after a divorce is filed. This is known as mandatory disclosure.

  1. Discovery

A more intensive list of documents, as long as the documents are related to the case, can be requested after the mandatory disclosure by either side. This process is called “discovery.”

  1. Negotiating and Mediating

Spouses may try to negotiate and reach an agreement on divorce-related issues. Often, mediation will be required by the court. This process entails a meeting between the divorcing spouses, their lawyers, and a mediator. The role of the mediator is to facilitate communication between the divorcing spouses and help them reach an agreement.

  1. Final Hearing or Trial

The final hearing should be short and stress-free if negotiations and mediation are successful. After the hearing is complete, the judge will enter a final judgment on the dissolution of the marriage. If mediation is unsuccessful, the case will go to trial, where a judge will hear from both sides and make a decision.

Contact Us for Legal Help

Our qualified Orlando divorce lawyers at The Arwani Law Firm can guide you through the divorce process. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and discuss your case.

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