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The Difference Between Contested and Uncontested Divorce

Actualizado: 2 de oct de 2019

In an uncontested divorce the Wife and Husband (the parties) have come to an agreement or are very close to coming to an agreement regarding all issues of their divorce. Generally speaking, there are no court appearances. .


The issues that both parties must be in agreement include the following:


Division of Marital Debt
Division of Marital Assets
Everything involving the Child(ren)
Custody (Physical and Legal)
Visitation Child Support

If all issues are agreed upon then the divorce is considered uncontested and will proceed as such. An uncontested divorce is a quick process that does not have to be unnecessarily expensive. The process includes an attorney drafting a contract between the parties that details the agreement regarding the above issues. Once the agreement is signed by the parties, the final divorce paperwork is submitted to the Supreme Court for processing. The divorce ends when the Supreme Court returns a Judgment of Divorce with Findings of Facts and Conclusions of Law.


Do both parties need an attorney in an uncontested divorce?


No. Divorce Filing Services will type your divorce papers, according to your instructions, and the papers will be filed with the Court. You may use a lawyer or mediator if you own a lot of property and can't decide how to divide it, but that is very expensive.


An uncontested divorce case usually has certain indicators such as:

The parties do not fight or argue unreasonably

There are no claims of domestic violence

The marriage is of a short duration

There are very little or no assets or debts

There are no children or if there are children there is an understanding regarding custody, visitation and child support

Both parties are W-2 wage earners

This is only a short list of criteria to consider when determining of your divorce action will be uncontested.


The Contested Divorce Action

In a contested divorce action the Husband and Wife cannot come to an agreement regarding the following issues:

Division of Marital DebtDivision of Marital AssetsEverything involving the Child(ren)Custody (Physical and Legal)VisitationChild Support

In the event that an agreement cannot be reached a judge, after trial, will decide these issues. This is considered a contested litigated divorce matter.


The Litigation Process in a Contested Divorce Action


Filing of a Summons and Complaint

Pendente Lite Issues are determined

The Parties appear in Court for a Preliminary Discovery scheduling conference

The Discovery process begins

Exchange of financial documents

Appraisal of real property

Valuation of degrees

Depositions of the parties

Subpoenas are issued

Trial evidence information is exchanged

The parties again appear in Court for additional conferences regarding discovery and/or settlement on an as needed basis

The parties appear for a pre-trial conference with the judge or court attorney

Outstanding motions are decided

The trial begins

Post-trial motions or necessary memorandum are submitted to the court

The divorce is finalized.


On a positive note some issues begin by being contested but during the divorce litigation process a settlement or agreement can be reached thereby limiting the issues for a judge to decide.



We offer a Free Initial Legal Consultation for Uncontested Divorce

As part of our commitment to providing excellent legal representation to all of our clients, whether they are a new client, existing client or returning client, our Westchester County legal professionals provide free initial legal consultations.

Contact our law firm for more information about how our experienced legal professionals can help you with your divorce matter. Contact us online or by telephone at (800) 840-5104.

Uncontested Divorce

New York Uncontested Divorce (Spousal Support/Maintenance)Child Abuse, Neglect and MaltreatmentContested vs. Uncontested DivorceCPS Fair HearingDivorce Process OverviewEquitable DistributionFamily Offenses/Domestic ViolenceFoster CareHigh Net Worth DivorceNo Fault DivorcePendente Lite MotionsPrenuptial & Postnuptial AgreementsResidency RequirementsYour Child & DivorceFirst Step to Divorce

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