In Florida divorce is called “dissolution of marriage” and it is the process by which the marriage is dissolved and assets are divided. If children are involved, other issues such as time-sharing, aka custody, child support, and parenting issues will be decided.
Florida is a No-Fault divorce state, which means you don’t have to have a specific reason or attribute fault to one person. All that is required is that one party claims that the marriage is “irretrievably broken”. There must be actual testimony of this for a Judge to divorce you.
To initiate a divorce, one must file a petition for dissolution of marriage. The filing of the petition is what opens the case and gets the ball rolling. The petition must then be served on the opposing party. Once service is complete, the other party usually files an answer or a counter-petition. The parties will then beginning the Discovery process. The Discovery process is key to any cases and it consists of both parties exchanging information. The most important piece of discovery is usually the financial affidavit. This is an affidavit that is sworn to by each party. It includes income, debts, assets, and living expenses. In addition to the financial affidavit, there is something called “Mandatory Disclosures”. These are documents and records that each side must produce if they are available.The discovery process should be complete before proceeding to mediation or trial because it will form the basis for the distribution of assets.