The Beginners Guide to Divorce

In 2021, a whopping 1,985,072 marriages took place across 45 US states. During this same time period, a total of 689,308 divorces also occurred. Although this shows that far more people get married during a year than get divorced, this figure is still high.

There are many reasons why people choose to get a divorce from their partner. While some people divorce because they have grown apart, others want one because their partner was unfaithful.

No matter what the reason, getting a divorce can be complicated. If you and your partner have decided that getting a divorce is the best option for you, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve created a beginners guide to divorce, which will talk you through the basics:

Consider Your Children and Your Finances

The first thing you must consider once you decide to divorce your partner is your children; where will they live, who will be their primary career, and how often will the other parent see them? This part is often relatively straightforward, and as long as you and your partner agree on everything, you shouldn’t need to attend court.

Once you know what is happening with the kids, the next thing you need to do is to look at your finances. This includes things like your savings, pensions, and your house. In most cases, it doesn’t matter who these belong to, they all form a pot of marital assets. This pot will need to be divided fairly between you both. In most marriages, this pot of assets is divided equally. However, this could change if one partner has significantly more needs than the other.

How Long Does Divorce Take?

Most people who want a divorce want it over as quickly as possible. However, there’s no such thing as a quickie divorce. A simple divorce, where both parties agree, will take approximately six months, but a more complicated divorce can take much longer.

Another thing that can increase the length of the divorce is if you or your partner are in the military. There are lots of differences between a military divorce vs. other types of divorces. It’s essential to understand the differences before you proceed.

The Steps Involved in Getting a Divorce

Here are the steps involved in getting a divorce:

  1. You or your partner will petition the court saying you want a divorce. This person must state the reason the relationship has ended. The person who files for the divorce is the petitioner, and the other person is the respondent.
  2. Once the court receives the document, they send it to the respondent. The respondent must fill in a form to say they received it. They can also state whether or not they agree to the divorce.
  3. If the court doesn’t see any issues with the divorce, they will issue a Decree Nisi – this is the first stage of the divorce.
  4. The final stage is the Decree Absolute. This cannot be issued until six weeks and one day after the Decree Nisi was authorized. When the Decree Absolute is issued, you are legally divorced.

Going to Court

An exceedingly small percentage of divorces end up in court, but if yours does, you first need to hire a solicitor specializing in this area. They will talk you through the process and help you to get the best outcome possible.

You may have heard that almost half of all marriages end in divorce. While this isn’t entirely true, statistics show that hundreds of thousands of divorces occur annually in the US. Thanks to this, it’s important to understand the basics of divorce should you find yourself in this situation.