If you are considering divorce, depending on your specific circumstances, you may have several options. The following is a breakdown of the different types of divorce in Pennsylvania and how they differ.
An attorney can answer your questions and explain how the law might apply to your particular situation.
How Long Does a Divorce Case in Pa Take?
The length of time for divorce in PA takes between 90 to 120 days, determining how easily the spouses agree on the terms of the divorce. In terms of marital property and debts, Pennsylvania follows equitable distribution rules. Nonetheless, take into consideration a period of five to 12 months if contested.
– Factors That Influence the Length of a Divorce in Pennsylvania Include:
The goal of equitable distribution is to achieve a fair division of all property and debts, not necessarily equal distribution. If a divorcing couple cannot reach an agreement before going to court, the court will divide the assets and debts in a way that it deems fair under the circumstances.
- Real estate, automobiles, businesses, and other assets owned by the spouses
- Debts owed by the spouses, such as outstanding loans, credit card debt, and others
- Whether or not the spouses entered into a prenuptial agreement
- Whether or not the spouses have children, and if so, how old are they.
- How quickly the court can review the divorce terms, hold hearings, and issue any necessary orders.
If a divorce is contested, which means the spouses are unable to agree on the terms of the divorce (or to divorce at all), the parties must take additional steps. Extra time will be needed for court hearings and negotiations between the spouses’ lawyers.
What are The Four Types of Divorce in Pennsylvania
Divorcing couples in Pennsylvania can generally take one of four approaches and each of these divorces has unique requirements and timelines.
– Mutual Consent Divorce in Pennsylvania
In this, both partners file an affidavit and sign a statement stating that they agree to divorce. The spouses are not required to live apart for a year before filing the affidavit. Instead, Pennsylvania law requires a 90-day period after filing and before finalising the divorce agreement. When a couple is ready, a mutual consent divorce is by far the quickest and simplest option.
– Divorce Without Fault After a Year Apart
You can file for a no-fault divorce after one year of separation. Following that, only one spouse is required to file an affidavit declaring the marriage irreparable. The shorter time frame relieves not only the divorcing couple but also their children.
– Pennsylvania Fault Divorce
A fault divorce is far more complicated than a no-fault divorce. One spouse must have committed one of the six grounds for a fault divorce in Pennsylvania:
Moving forward with fault divorce, on the other hand, necessitates more than simply accusing one spouse of any of the aforementioned offenses. The court official will then inform the judge whether the grounds for a fault divorce are valid and have in fact destroyed the marriage.
If they are accepted, the fault divorce may proceed. If not, the spouse may file an appeal or choose another type of divorce.
– Divorce After Institutionalization
If one spouse is institutionalized for a mental disorder, the other spouse can file for divorce in Pennsylvania without a court hearing. The period begins 18 months after institutionalization. There must also be no intention of releasing the patient within the next 18 months. Each of these divorces has its own timetable. The best approach depends on the couple’s specific situation.
What Is Pennsylvania’s Divorce Procedure?
After the waiting period has passed, the process of dissolving the marriage may start.. Divorcing spouses in Pennsylvania must take the same steps to end their marriage. These steps are as follows:
- Divorce complaint filing
- Record collecting
- Hearings and negotiations
- Decision-making and judgement
A Pennsylvania divorce begins with the filing of a “complaint.” which will be filed with the court in one copy. The spouse must be “served” with the other within 30 days. Except in the case of a mutual consent divorce, one spouse must “serve” a copy of the complaint on the other spouse within 30 days of filing.
– After Filing
Following the filing of the legal paperwork, the spouses will gather important records pertaining to their assets and debts. The spouses must then reach an agreement regarding property division, child custody, and financial support. The divorce agreement details the following arrangements:
- Property division in a marriage
- Debt distribution in a marriage
- If the spouses have children, they must agree on child custody and child support.
- Support for the spouse
- The court then issues a divorce decree, which officially ends the marriage.
If your divorce is uncontested, which means you and your spouse can agree on the terms of the divorce, the process will be relatively simple. If your divorce is contested, which means you and your spouse are unable to reach an agreement, you will almost certainly need to resort to litigation.
In these cases, the court helps to draft the final divorce agreement. Trials and hearings can add time to the process.
Frequently Asked Questions
– What Is Distribution Equity Pennsylvania Divorce ?
Pennsylvania follows equitable distribution rules. In other words, the court anticipates that couples will fairly divide their marital property and debts (but not necessarily equally). Among the marital assets are: the parties’ own homes, cars, and businesses. In addition the jewelry and art investments, as well as retirement accounts
In Pennsylvania, anything purchased during the marriage is considered marital property, even if it is only in one party’s name. Similarly, marital debts are those incurred by one or both spouses after the marriage but before the divorce.
If divorcing spouses cannot reach an agreement before going to court, the court will divide the marital assets and debts in a way that it deems fair under the circumstances.
– How Much Does a Divorce in Pennsylvania Cost?
As you prepare for divorce, you have a lot of questions. Everyone is curious about the total cost of a divorce in Pennsylvania. Divorce costs can include court filing fees, family law attorney fees, parent education classes, and mediation fees.
Costs for evaluations such as psychiatric evaluations or counseling and expert witness fees may also be incurred. Other costs may apply depending on your circumstances. Remember that the cost of a divorce is heavily influenced by where you live, whether you and your spouse have children, whether you own real estate or vehicles, your debt, and a variety of other factors.
While there are numerous factors that can influence the cost and duration of your divorce, these four will almost always result in higher costs: dispute with your spouse, meaning if you and your spouse can agree on issues such as custody, child support, and property division, you will spend far less money on fees and court costs.
If the cost of custody battles, which means the recurrence of fighting over children will increase the cost of a divorce. In addition to attorneys’ fees, parties must pay for child custody evaluations or a Guardian Ad Litem. Other expert witnesses regarding school selection, medical care, and orthodontic care are frequently required.
If the couple has a large number of marital assets or marital debt then, the more marital property or debt you have, the more complicated your divorce will be. If you and your spouse have real estate, retirement accounts, personal property, investments, and personal property, you may need the services of a financial analyst, forensic accountant, or real estate appraiser.
Lastly, it depends on whether the lawyer you hire will have a significant impact on the cost of your divorce, but this does not mean that hiring the cheapest attorney in town will save you money in the long run.
An attorney who is familiar with divorce, child custody, and support laws, as well as the procedure in the jurisdiction where your case will be heard, will increase efficiency and help you save money.
– Can I Get a Pa Divorce Without an Attorney?
According to divorce laws, It is possible to complete a divorce in Pennsylvania without the assistance of a family law attorney. For some spouses, this makes financial sense; if you can work together amicably, you may end up saving money on unnecessary legal fees. Unfortunately, this is not always the case.
Even when a divorce in Pennsylvania begins amicably, it does not always end amicably. More often than not, we see spouses with ill will and a desire to “even the score.”
Throughout their marriage, most spouses accumulate at least some marital assets and debts. Many factors must be considered in order to divide these assets and debts equitably. When, for example, was the asset purchased? Was the debt incurred to further your education and did your spouse benefit from a salary increase as a result?
Do you believe you’ve protected yourself by putting assets solely in your name? Consider again. It makes no difference if the brand new car you purchased is titled solely to you and not jointly with your spouse; if it was purchased during the marriage, it will almost certainly be considered marital property in a divorce. Your ex is now entitled to a quarter of the value of the car you worked so hard to obtain.
In Conclusion consider getting a “quick” divorce by hiring an attorney to only complete the necessary documents, settlement agreement, spousal support etc. Further we conclude the following:
- If a divorce is contested, which means the spouses are unable to agree on the terms of the divorce (or to divorce at all), the parties must take additional steps. Extra time will be needed for court hearings and negotiations between the spouses’ lawyers.
- A 50/50 split may appear fair at first glance, but you may be entitled to a larger percentage of your marital estate; the key is to have an experienced divorce attorney advocating on your behalf.
- An inept attorney can make your divorce more painful than it needs to be, as well as more expensive in the long run. Without proper legal counsel, your spouse may take advantage of the situation in ways that are irreversible.
- “Date of Separation” can have a significant impact on your divorce in Pennsylvania? This could be the date one of you moved out of the marital home, or it could be the date you started sleeping in separate beds; there is no hard and fast rule about what constitutes a date of separation.
Get your divorce papers and file for a quick contested divorce or uncontested divorce keeping in mind the above guidelines.
- How Much is a Divorce in Georgia: Average Prices of Divorce - September 20, 2022
- How Much is a Divorce in Louisiana? Getting Through Divorce - September 19, 2022
- How Much Is a Divorce in NJ: Cost of Marriage Termination - September 18, 2022