Petition for divorce paperwork

What Forms Do I Need to Complete to Begin Divorce Proceedings in Florida?

Filing For Divorce in Florida

If you are considering filing for divorce in Florida, in addition to hiring an attorney to assist you with your case, it is essential to understand the necessary forms to begin the process. This blog post will discuss which documents are needed to file for divorce, explain why they are required, and what steps you can take to move forward with your divorce.

The Initial Forms Needed for Divorce in Florida

Petition for Dissolution of Marriage

The first step when filing for a divorce in Florida is to complete and submit a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage (Form 12.901(b)(2)). One spouse, also known as the petitioner, must complete this form.

This form outlines pertinent information regarding the marriage, such as:

  • Date of marriage
  • Date of separation
  • Property division
  • Request for alimony or child support

Summons and Notice of Automatic Injunction

The next step is filing a Summons and Notice of Automatic Injunction form (Form 12.915). This form notifies both parties involved in the divorce proceedings of their legal obligations during this process.

It also places an injunction on both parties which prohibits them from doing the following:

  • Removing money from bank accounts
  • Selling assets without permission from their spouse
  • Making changes to insurance policies
  • Harassing their spouse or other family members
  • Moving out of state with minor children without written consent from all parents involved

Financial Affidavit

Another form required when filing for divorce in Florida is a Financial Affidavit (Form 12.902(e)). This document provides detailed information regarding each party's income, assets, and liabilities prior to commencing the divorce proceedings. This form is required so both parties understand each other's financial situation before negotiations begin.

Marital Settlement Agreement For Simplified Dissolution of Marriage (Optional)

This form is not required and can only be used when both parties have agreed on all issues. These issues include:

  • Child custody
  • Alimony
  • Division of property
  • And other issues related to divorce

Fees When Filing for Divorce

All three required documents must be completed accurately and completely before being submitted to the court, along with a filing fee of $409 per person seeking a divorce in Florida.

What To Do Once The Paperwork Has Been Filed

Once the required documents have been filled out, you or your attorney must file them with the court. It's important to note that there is usually a waiting period before your divorce can be finalized, typically 60 days after the petition is filed.

What Happens After The Divorce Paperwork Has Been Finalized?

Once all the necessary paperwork has been filed and the waiting period has passed, it's time to begin negotiating with your spouse or their attorney about the following issues:

  • Dividing assets
  • Debts
  • Child custody/support payments (if applicable)
  • Alimony payments (if applicable)

This negotiation process can take a few weeks or months, depending on how complicated your situation is and how much both parties are willing to compromise. While some couples may negotiate these matters on their own or through a mediator, others may find it beneficial to hire an experienced family law attorney to help them navigate these negotiations as quickly and efficiently as possible.

How An Experienced Attorney Can Help You Throughout The Process

The process of filing for divorce can be daunting, but having an experienced attorney by your side makes navigating this difficult transition smoother and less stressful.

An experienced family law attorney understands all of the local laws and regulations related to divorce filings in Florida. They will provide sound advice regarding how best to approach negotiations with your spouse or their lawyer so that you receive favorable outcomes during mediation and court hearings.

Ultimately, having an attorney on your side throughout this process will ensure you receive fair treatment under Florida law while protecting your rights throughout this emotionally charged time.

Related articles you might find helpful: Keep It Simple: Benefits of Collaborative Divorce

If you need an experienced family law attorney prepared to fight for you and your family, contact our experienced attorneys at Orshan, Spann & Fernandez-Mesa today. (305) 853-9161