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The Divorce Process

Beginning the process of divorce or dissolution of marriage can be difficult and stressful, and following the correct steps is important to ensure that your divorce is not denied or prolonged.

The exact process for having a divorce or dissolution of marriage granted depends on where you live, so it is best to consult local professionals and get accurate resources applicable to your scenario. Beginning a divorce or dissolution of marriage can be difficult and stressful, and following the correct steps is important to ensure that your divorce is not denied or prolonged.

Divorcing spouses may find the following blog articles useful:

Average Cost of a Divorce

How to File for Joint Custody

How Does Joint Custody Work?

How Divorce Affects Relocating

Petition for Divorce

The petition is what begins the divorce process when one spouse serves the other. This document lists the marriage elements that will need to be discussed, from any property, children, or support. The respondent (the spouse who is being served) can choose whether to accept the divorce by signing an acknowledgment of receipt, or they can file a response that agrees or disagrees.

Consult an attorney or other legal professional on your state’s laws to determine who can and cannot serve the petition. Misserving the petition can lead to a case dismissal and you will need to restart the process.

The petition is filed in a local court and will site the grounds upon which the divorce is being sought.

The petition is what begins the separation or “cooling off” period between spouses.

Cooling Off Period

In many places, a cooling-off period is required between filing the divorce and having it granted. The cooling-off period can vary from days to months, and they are times for the spouses to live separately and make sure that divorce is the right choice for them; this may also be a legal separation.

Temporary Orders

Spouses can request temporary orders during the cooling-off period to create child custody and financial support agreements. These orders may include restraining orders or financial restraining orders so that neither party can sell the marital property during the divorce.

As the name suggests, these orders are temporary and only apply until the divorce is granted.



Before going to trial, many courts will assign a third-party mediator to resolve any conflicts. Mediation can save money and time throughout divorce by helping both parties avoid court and additional attorney fees.

This type of divorce gives more power to the spouses involved because they can talk through the issues and make the decisions without any intervention of a judge. The agreement needs to be approved and finalized by the court, but it allows them to avoid trial.

Dividing assets during a divorce is not a one-size-fits-all formula, so be sure to consider the many factors and assets involved in your divorce.


If mediation or negotiation between spouses is not possible, they will be required to resolve their disputes in court. A trial will be set, and a judge will make the final decision.


Using a co-parenting communication service like TalkingParents can help you, and your co-parent maintain accurate and secure records as your work to finalize your custody agreement. Talk, text, and plan all in one place. Our secure system and unalterable Records keep everything accountable and easy to use.

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