Divorce Basics 2017-11-09T16:36:57+00:00

In Florida, a divorce is sometimes referred to as “dissolution of marriage.” The person filing for divorce is known as the petitioner and the person responding to the divorce is known as the respondent. To begin the process of dissolution of marriage, the petitioner should file a divorce petition with the clerk of the circuit court in the county where he or she lives. The clerk of the circuit court’s office is usually located in the county courthouse.

There are only two grounds for divorce in Florida: (1) the marriage is irretrievably broken or (2) the mental incapacity of one of the parties, where the party was adjudged incapacitated for the preceding three years. (See Fla. Stat. § 61.052 for full text of the law).

Within any divorce, issues that must be considered in such actions are as follows, yet some may not apply to your case:

  • Child custody
  • Child support;
  • Visitation of children;
  • Division of assets/property;
  • Alimony (i.e. spousal support);
  • Division of debt;
  • And more.
To file for divorce in any state, you must satisfy the state’s residency requirements. In Florida, the person filing for divorce (i.e. the Petitioner) must have lived in Florida for at least 6 months prior to filing suit. (See Fla. Stat. § 61.021).
Grounds for divorce means the legally recognized reasons for divorcing. Grounds for divorce vary from state to state. Some states allow for people divorce under “fault” grounds (i.e. adultery, abandonment, cruel and inhuman treatment, etc.). However, Florida does not allow for fault ground pleading. There are only two “no-fault” grounds for divorce in Florida: (1) the marriage is irretrievably broken or (2) the mental incapacity of one of the parties, where the party was adjudged incapacitated for the preceding three years. (See Fla. Stat. § 61.052 for full text of the law).