Should a Divorce Take Five Years?

By Teo Spengler

While many states impose a minimum period between an initial divorce filing and a final court order, none set an outside limit. As long as the spouses are actively litigating marital issues, the court lacks authority to dismiss the case. Sometimes, a divorce drags on longer than the marriage it seeks to end, but this is the exception -- not the rule.

While many states impose a minimum period between an initial divorce filing and a final court order, none set an outside limit. As long as the spouses are actively litigating marital issues, the court lacks authority to dismiss the case. Sometimes, a divorce drags on longer than the marriage it seeks to end, but this is the exception -- not the rule.

Time Frame for Divorce

How long a divorce action takes partly depends on the state you file in. State laws vary on the minimum amount of time a couple must wait before a divorce becomes final, although, generally, the required waiting period is measured in months, not years. In addition, even if the waiting time has passed, getting an early trial date is not always easy. Some state courts are so backed up that divorce trials are scheduled many months in advance.

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Factors That Encourage Resolution

Spouses can speed up the divorce process if both are interested in doing so. Months can be saved if the respondent spouse accepts service of the divorce paperwork instead of avoiding it. Further, it will save time if the spouses agree on divorce issues, since divorce does not require a trial. If a marital settlement agreement has all the required information, the judge's task is simplified and it is easier and faster for the judge to make the divorce final.

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How Long Does a Divorce in West Virginia Take?

References

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How Long Does it Take to Divorce in Washington State?

The exact amount of time it takes to get a divorce in Washington State depends on whether the divorce will be contested or uncontested, and on whether there are any minor children involved. Generally, uncontested divorces where there are no minor children are much quicker to obtain than contested divorces. For all divorces in Washington State, there is a minimum time limit which cannot be reduced.

How Long Does Divorce Take in Michigan if You Have No Children?

Establishing custody and support for a minor child can be a time-consuming aspect of the divorce process. These matters often become highly contested and Michigan law imposes a longer waiting period for divorces if you have children. Otherwise, the time it takes to finalize any divorce generally comes down to how quickly you and your spouse can agree on all issues and reach a settlement.

Step-by-Step Divorce Process in Oregon

Oregon offers a summary divorce, but the summary process is limited to couples with certain qualifications, so most Oregon couples use the standard divorce process. Oregon divorce begins when one spouse files for divorce in the appropriate court and proceeds through an information gathering phase to a final trial or hearing. Then, the court grants a divorce decree, concluding the process.

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