Divorce is a challenging process for spouses and their children. Not only do they have to deal with the emotional aspect but also the practical side of all the changes. Understanding how divorce works can alleviate a part of your anxiety with the entire process.
Basic steps to take note of
The divorce procedure in Louisiana is mostly similar to other states. These are the basic steps you have to go through when filing for a divorce:
- Residency requirement: At least one of the spouses must have established and maintained a residence in Louisiana.
- Grounds for divorce: There must be a legally acceptable reason to end the marriage.
- Divorce papers: One spouse should then file the divorce document and send copies to the other spouse.
- Action from the recipient spouse:
- Contested divorce: If the recipient spouse disagrees with anything on the divorce papers, they will have the opportunity to explain their side
- Uncontested divorce: If the recipient spouse accepts the document’s contents, they will have to sign it before sending it back to the spouse or the court.
- Unsigned papers: If the recipient spouse does not sign the document within a certain period, the other spouse may be able to proceed with the divorce as an uncontested one.
- Property settlement and custody: An out-of-court settlement or court hearings will take place if there are assets to divide or the judge has to decide on custody.
The typical duration of the divorce process
The duration of the divorce process will depend on specific circumstances. An uncontested divorce usually receives a quicker judgment. On the other hand, a contested divorce may take longer since a judge will get involved and you will have to discuss a number of things such as child custody, child support, alimony, property division and debt division.
It is important to keep in mind that a divorce judgment is not final until the 30-day appeal period has passed. You should not remarry before the period is up to prevent further complications.