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Ending an irretrievably broken marriage in Florida

In Florida, the requirement to ask for a divorce -- or a "dissolution of marriage," as it is called within the state's legal system -- is simply that your marriage is irretrievably broken. You just have to show that you cannot fix it, and then either you or your spouse can go forward with the paperwork. While fault used to be considered, changes to the law mean that it no longer matters at all.

As you can imagine, this open-ended requirement means each couple who asks for a divorce is in a unique position. No two cases are going to be exactly the same. The reasons that a marriage is broken could include infidelity, abuse, and much more. The reason does not matter as much as showing that the two of you simply cannot stay married for that reason.

When people decide to file for divorce, they can use the petition itself to tell the court what they desire. This starts with the ground for the split, but it could also include things like the desired child custody situation, a request for alimony payments, and the like.

One legal stipulation that is worth noting before filing is that you have to have been a resident of the state of Florida for a set amount of time before a divorce can be requested. Right now, that time is set at six months.

Are you in a position where you think you cannot fix your marriage, where it is irretrievably broken? No matter what happened or whose fault it is, you need to make sure that you know about your rights and the legal steps that must be followed.

Source: The Florida Bar, "Divorce In Florida" Nov. 11, 2014

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