Missouri Contested Divorce
Divorce can be a life changing and very painful event in your life. With every ones emotions on high alert, it can fairly hard for a divorcing husband and wife to be agreeable about many issues including child custody, dividing up the marital debts and assets, alimony or maintenance to one of the spouses, and child support arrangements. If divorcing couples cannot come reach an agreement outside of a Missouri court, it will end up resulting in an expensive and lengthy divorce process. A contested divorce can cause increased stress for everyone involved in a divorce, including children. Hiring a qualified and experienced Missouri divorce attorney before starting the divorce proceedings will make the whole divorce process considerably easier and save you time and money. Hiring an experienced divorce attorney will also help prevent one spouse from being taken advantage of by the more controlling or dominant spouse.
In Missouri there are two types of divorces:
1. A Missouri contested divorce is a divorce in which the divorcing spouses are not agreeable on such issues as child custody, child support, alimony or maintenance, distribution of any debt, or division of property or real estate. In a Missouri contested divorce, the spouses will have to end up taking these disagreements to a Missouri court to be decided by a judge. This typically will extend the divorce proceedings and in turn result in much higher legal costs. During the mediation process, if one or both of the spouses are in disagreement or the spouses cannot work out an agreement on all of the issues, then both spouses will have an opportunity to present their sides to a Missouri Judge and then have the Judge rule on behalf of their case.
2. A Missouri uncontested divorce is when both husband and wife are in agreement on these issues and work through the terms of the divorce without proceeding to a trial. Uncontested cases generally move much more quickly through the Missouri court system and are less costly than Missouri contested divorces. Although, the perceived thought that uncontested divorces are simple can cause problems when spouses try and attempt the divorce process themselves instead of hiring an experienced Kansas City, MO divorce lawyer.
Quite often separating couples will assume they are both on the same page and have reached an agreement on all of the issues relating to the divorce, only to find out that the husband and wife did not actually cover all of the issues that need to be included in the divorce settlement agreement. Even if the two of you have come to a verbal agreement on most divorce issues, it is still a good idea to have an experienced family law attorney look over the agreement in order to determine if all possible issues have been gone over and are in agreement. A divorce settlement agreement entered into between the husband and wife must still be reviewed and approved by a Missouri Judge before it is part of the Judgment and Decree of Dissolution (Divorce Decree).
There are definite advantages to an uncontested divorce but sometimes a Missouri contested divorce is a better option to go with. This is quite often the case in more complicated divorces where the husband and wife have significant assets or when a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement is involved and one spouse wants to enforce this agreement and the other spouse is claiming the prenup or postnup is not valid and not enforceable. A contested divorce may also be better choice in marriage where there is spousal abuse or when husband and wife are not on speaking terms.
Missouri divorce proceedings can become very complicated process, especially when there are children or substantial property or assets that are involved, and for this reason it is wise to speak to a divorce lawyer before filing for starting the proceedings. If you or your spouse are considering a divorce, it is very important to have a qualified and experienced divorce lawyer in your corner.
If you have any questions about your Missouri divorce options, Lee’s Summit based divorce attorneys at Altieri Gilmore LLP can help. Call our office today for a free and confidential divorce case evaluation. Going through a divorce is always difficult no matter what side of the fence you are on. Having an experienced divorce lawyer on your side in the case can have a very positive impact on the outcome of your divorce case. Call Altieri Gilmore LLP at 816-524-0404
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