When discussing divorce in Connecticut, much attention is given to the major issues that need to be settled to dissolve a marriage, including child custody and support, property division, and alimony. However, it is also highly important to understand the procedural aspects of divorce in our state. The law has requirements that divorcing couples must meet before their case can be finalized and strict procedures are followed by the courts.
At least one spouse must have resided in Connecticut for one year before a divorce judgment is issued (note this is before the divorce is finalized, not initially filed). There are a few exceptions to this requirement, including you previously lived in CT and recently moved back intending to stay permanently, or you moved to CT and then the need for a divorce arose.
Filing the Complaint
One spouse must prepare and file a complaint that initiates the divorce case, which generally should be done with the assistance of an experienced divorce attorney. There are fees associated with filing, serving the other spouse, and parent education programs if required by the court.
The court will order both spouses to not transfer, hide, withdraw, or spend large amounts of money, to not relocate with children, to not sell or mortgage property, or to deny the other spouse access to the home – unless a spouse has been awarded exclusive access to the home by the court.
Most divorcing spouses have to wait at least 90 days before their first scheduled case management date. However, there are circumstances – including simplified divorces – that have a shorter waiting period.
Negotiations and Court Hearings
If you and your spouse agree on all issues by your case management date, there is the possibility of finalizing your divorce at that time. If not, you will have time to engage in negotiations, mediation, and other tactics to resolve your issues. Once you agree, you can schedule a hearing for the court to review your agreements and documents and, if approved, your divorce can be granted. If you cannot agree, your case will have to go to trial for the court to make decisions for you.
Discuss Your Situation with Our Connecticut Divorce Attorneys
The Stamford divorce lawyers at the Law Offices of Piazza, Simmons & Grant, L.L.C. know the divorce process can be confusing and that every case is different. If you need assistance with any type of family law matter, call us at 203-348-2465 for help today.