The number one question clients ask is how long it will take to complete my divorce. Below is an overview of the divorce process and our attempt to answer this is question. The answer largely depends on a number of factors and the actions of the opposing party. The divorce process involves two parties, two lawyers (in most cases), a Superior Court Judge, and sometimes, mediators and experts. California Courts – Steps for Divorce or Legal Separation – click here.
Unfortunately, if one party wants to drag out the process and does not have a desire to resolve any issues, a lengthy and expensive divorce is all but guaranteed. If one party has a psychological disorder, drug/alcohol addiction or anger management problems, there is a greater likelihood of a difficult and costly divorce.
At the same time, if the parties and their divorce lawyers desire to settle their case and are willing to compromise, a divorce may be resolved quickly and inexpensively. In general, most divorces do not result in contested hearings and are resolved outside of court.
Why is My Divorce Taking so Long?
Some issues are more complex and/or time consuming and may extend the divorce process. For example, contested custody, domestic violence, and business valuation issues will likely extend the divorce process. Moreover, high-asset matters generally involve more issues and more complexities, which may lead to more time. However, even with difficult issues, a divorce can be settled in a timely manner if the parties conduct themselves in a respectful and reasonable manner. It is very important that you select a divorce lawyer that is experienced and familiar with the process and ultimately has the desire to solve problems rather than create them.
We are often told by clients, “My friend recently divorced and she got this amount…” Comparing your divorce case to others is not a good idea. Each case is factually different and no two divorces follow the exact same path. Below is an example of a potential sequence of events that may occur in a divorce. It should be noted that our court system is over-burdened and the resulting congestion has caused increased delays. It is not uncommon for divorces hearings to be continued multiple times and it is not uncommon for trial days to be separated by weeks (sometimes months) due to other matters pending in the same courtroom.
Potential Sequence of Events in a Divorce Case
A divorce is similar to the division of a partnership. Even a straight forward divorce is rarely as simple as non-lawyers believe it will be. The procedures established by the legislature must be followed carefully to avoid a set aside of the divorce judgment at a later date. The procedures can be confusing and time consuming. The last thing a person wants is for their divorce to be delayed because procedures are not followed and special care must be exercised in following these specific legal procedures.
The divorce lawyers at Tierney Law Group strive to complete our client’s divorces in an affordable and timely manner. Divorces that are resolved in less time, cost less money. Our lawyers work closely with our clients to expedite the process and minimize the time required to complete the divorce.