What is the Difference Between a Contested and Uncontested Divorce?

Divorce proceedings can be very complex and time-consuming. It requires a great amount of patience to make the decisions that are necessary to dissolve a marriage. How spouses can come to an agreement may affect the process of their divorce. In the state of Georgia, there are two main types of divorces: contested divorce and uncontested divorce. Different types of divorces allow couples to go through with their divorce in a way that suits them. If you are going through a divorce, an experienced attorney can guide you through the proceedings.

Contested Divorce

A contested divorce is when the couple cannot come to an agreement on their marital issues. When this happens, neither spouse signs an agreement on their terms of separation, therefore leaving their issues unsolved. In the event of this, a judge will take over the decision-making process and decide how to resolve the couple’s disputes. This gives a judge the right to make decisions on matters such as child support, custody, the division of assets, and alimony.

A spouse is able to cite “fault” or “no-fault” grounds in a contested divorce. When no-fault grounds is cited, neither spouse is holding the other accountable for the end of their marriage and they may begin the divorce proceedings. When a spouse files for divorce on fault grounds, it means they are holding the other spouse accountable for an action that ended their marriage. Situations such as these may include:

  • Adultery
  • Desertion
  • Lack of mental capacity
  • Cruelty
  • Impotency
  • Incarceration for over 2 years
  • Pregnancy outside of the marriage
  • Habitual intoxication or drug addiction
  • Fraudulent marriage
  • Incurable mental illness
  • Intermarriage between blood relatives to a degree

Uncontested Divorce

When a couple goes through an uncontested divorce, it means that all marital issues between the two have been resolved. These are issues regarding alimony, child custody and support, parenting time, division of assets, and any payment of debts. This situation occurs when both spouses believe their marriage cannot be fixed and agree to the terms of their divorce. This is also known as an “Irretrievable Breakdown of Marriage.”

When a divorce is uncontested, the spouses can choose if they wish to divorce through mediation, arbitration, collaborative divorce, or even simply private discussions. This is voluntary, although it is typically a more efficient process and beneficial for all family involved.

Contact our Firm

If you or someone you know is going through a divorce and wishes to seek legal counsel, contact The Alfred Law Firm, LLC. today.

Alfred Law Firm, LLC is proud to serve clients in Georgia when they face legal matters related to family law and criminal defense. When legal issues arise, it is important to have the guidance of an experienced attorney that can help you obtain a favorable outcome. Contact our firm today to schedule a consultation.

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client's social or economic status.” - Janice F. Alfred, Esq.

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