Comparing Uncontested & Contested Divorce
Lawyers with Nearly 25 Years' Experience
Do you know the difference between contested vs. uncontested divorce? This
page explains how these two types of
divorce differ, and how a attorney can assist you through both processes. You'll
lawyer's role in a contested divorce or an uncontested divorce, and why you need
strong legal representation no matter what.
Call the firm today at (417) 288-4433.
Why We're Passionate About Divorce Representation
At Shuler Law Firm, LLC, when it comes to divorce representation in Missouri,
we've seen it all. Our clients know it, and they trust us to be there
for them during their divorces. That's why we're passionate about providing
premier legal advocacy and counsel for clients facing marriage dissolution
in the Springfield area.
Uncontested vs. Contested Divorce
- There are two types of divorces:
Uncontested divorce - The parties reach an agreement regarding the terms of their divorce
out of court including child support, child custody, and property division.
Contested divorce – The parties are unable to come to an agreement regarding the terms
of a divorce out of court and require divorce litigation.
It is obvious to most why retaining a divorce lawyer is necessary for a
contested divorce. You need someone to stand up for you and represent
your interests. In an uncontested divorce, an attorney can still help
you by providing you with advice, examining your agreement, and protecting
you against potentially damaging errors or omissions. With so much on
the line, you owe it to yourself and your children to take all necessary
precautions. Hiring an attorney could be a wise step.
Uncontested Divorce & Waiting Period
When you and your spouse agree to all terms of a divorce it becomes uncontested.
These terms include issues such as child custody, debt allocation, child
support, and alimony. There are two ways that you can file for an uncontested
divorce in Missouri:
Default Proceeding – upon serving your spouse the divorce papers, they have approximately
20 to 30 days to respond. If they do not reply within that window, it
becomes “default” and the case will be set for an uncontested
final hearing. This hearing will take place with or without both spouses present.
Joint Petition for Divorce – If each spouse agrees to the terms amicably, they may file a joint
petition together and attach a copy of their written agreement. This allows
for them to skip the rest of the processes and go straight to a final hearing.
The state of Missouri also requires that you meet certain requirements
- Either you or your spouse must have been a resident of the state for at
least 90 days before filing the divorce papers.
Although Missouri is a no-fault state, you must be able to prove that your
Benefits of an Uncontested Divorce in Missouri
There are often several benefits that come along with an uncontested divorce
that you won’t get with a contested divorce.
Faster resolution – If the matters of the divorce are uncontested, then it won’t
take nearly as long to form an agreement and officially settle the divorce
Lower costs – The attorney fees will often be lower since an uncontested divorce
is often resolved much more quickly than a litigated divorce
Privacy – When a divorce is uncontested, then it’s not necessary to
litigate the divorce in court, which provides much more privacy for the
Better emotional experience – If the spouses are not disputing the terms of the divorce, then
there will be less conflict in general, which will avoid many of the hardships
that a contested divorce naturally brings
Call Shuler Law Firm, LLC at
(417) 288-4433 to learn more about how we can help you in a contested or uncontested
divorce proceeding, starting with a free initial phone consulation.