How Much Time Is Needed to Finalize a Divorce in Madison, Missouri?

Divorce can be tough and painful; however, it doesn’t need to be a lengthy process. The duration of a divorce depends on a lot of factors like the willingness of both parties to cooperate and settle their divorce issues outside of court. For the majority of uncontested divorces, resolution is possible after 90 days from the filing of the divorce petition. Meanwhile, fully contested divorces can take 6-12 months or even longer.  You can learn more about the amount of time needed to resolve a divorce in Madison, Missouri below:

When Can You File for Divorce?

A divorce petition must identify the spouses involved and their minor kids, if any, and offer details regarding the marriage and separation. State law lets any person who has lived in the state for a minimum of 90 days to file this petition.  If child custody is an issue that must be resolved in the divorce, the jurisdiction requirement is often six months. 

How Much Time It Takes to Finalize a Missouri Divorce?

Under state law, family courts can’t grant a divorce until 30 days after a petition has been filed. You and your spouse can sign a settlement agreement and present this to a family judge on the 31st day. But this is a rare scenario because of the docketing of most courts. This is the reason the usual minimum is 90 days. In general, the length of the divorce process often depends on whether it is contested or uncontested. 

  • Contested divorce. This can take a long time if both spouses own a huge amount of marital property and can’t agree on the division. Also, the case can drag on for several years if at least one party is accused of abuse, adultery, or other forms of marital conduct that impact issues such as spousal maintenance or property division. If dispute resolution efforts such as mediation and negotiation do not lead to a settlement, a contested divorce will need to go to trial. 
  • Uncontested divorce. To settle this type of divorce, both parties should agree on issues such as marital property and debt division, spousal support payments, as well as child custody and support when applicable. Resolving such issues can be simple, depending on the circumstances of both parties. The more a couple owns assets, the longer it takes to divide them. If kids are involved, a couple must work out a lot of details ahead of time. Their parenting plan should include parenting time, health insurance and child support provisions, and other related matters.