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Understanding the Missouri Divorce Process

Understanding the Missouri Divorce Process

Going through a divorce can be an emotionally challenging and complex process. Understanding the Missouri divorce process is essential in making informed decisions and ensuring a fair outcome. This step-by-step guide will help you navigate the process and provide valuable tips to make the journey smoother.

Determine Your Eligibility for a Missouri Divorce

Before filing for divorce in Missouri, you must meet certain residency requirements. Either you or your spouse must have been a resident of the state for at least 90 days before filing. Additionally, you must wait 30 days after filing before the court can grant a divorce.

Choose the Appropriate Grounds for Divorce

Missouri is a no-fault divorce state, meaning that either spouse can file for divorce without proving any wrongdoing by the other party. The most common ground for divorce in Missouri is the "irretrievable breakdown" of the marriage, which means that the marriage is beyond repair and there is no reasonable likelihood of reconciliation.

However, Missouri law also allows for fault-based grounds, such as adultery, abandonment, or abuse. If you choose to pursue a fault-based divorce, you'll need to provide evidence to support your claims.

File the Necessary Paperwork

To initiate the divorce process, you'll need to file a "Petition for Dissolution of Marriage" with the appropriate circuit court. This document outlines the basic information about your marriage, such as the date and place of marriage, the names and ages of any children, and the grounds for divorce.

After filing the petition, you'll need to serve your spouse with a copy of the divorce papers. This can be done through a process server, the county sheriff, or by certified mail. Your spouse will then have 30 days to respond to the petition.

Negotiate the Terms of Your Divorce

During the divorce process, you and your spouse will need to address various issues, including:

  • Division of marital property and debts
  • Child custody and visitation
  • Child support
  • Spousal support (alimony)

Negotiating these terms can be challenging, especially when emotions are running high. It's important to approach these discussions with a clear understanding of your rights and the best interests of your children in mind. If you and your spouse can't agree on the terms, the court will make the final decisions based on Missouri's divorce laws.

Attend the Final Hearing and Receive Your Divorce Decree

Once you and your spouse have reached an agreement or the court has made its decisions, you'll attend a final hearing. The judge will review the terms of your divorce and ensure that they are fair and equitable. If the judge approves the terms, they will issue a "Judgment of Dissolution of Marriage," which finalizes your divorce.

Seek professional guidance to navigate the Missouri divorce process

Divorce can be a complicated and emotionally draining process. Having an experienced family law attorney by your side can make a significant difference in the outcome of your case. At Hogan Law Group, LLC, we specialize in understanding the Missouri divorce process and can provide the guidance and support you need to navigate this challenging time.

Our team of skilled attorneys will work with you to protect your rights, ensure a fair division of assets, and prioritize the best interests of your children.

Contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn more about how we can help you through the Missouri divorce process.


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