Montgomery County Divorce Attorney
Divorce’s moral acceptability rating recently hit an all-time high. So, many people, such as older adults, who never would have considered marriage dissolution before now see divorce as a legitimate way to end an unsatisfying marriage. Unless the parties had a solid premarital agreement, these matters could be extremely protracted, even if the filing spouse asks for a no-fault divorce.
- Child Custody
- Child Custody Relocation
- Child Support
- Child Support Modification
- Division of Assets & Debts
- Equitable Distribution
- Equitable Distribution Order Enforcement
- High Income/Net Worth Divorce
- Marital Property Division
- Marital Settlement Agreements
- Military Divorce
- Same-Sex Marriage Dissolutions
- Self-Employed & Business-Owner Divorce
- Separation Agreements
- Spousal Support & Alimony
The compassionate Montgomery County divorce attorneys at Kardos, Rickles & Hand understand the emotional and financial issues involved in these matters. We also understand the need for couples to resolve their differences in a reasonably amicable manner, especially if they have minor children. Some firms make big promises in this area. Because we know what you are going through, we simply promise to give our best effort every day.
Filing the Petition
Most divorces in Montgomery County are no-fault divorces based on irreconcilable differences. The spouses simply elect to go their separate ways. Frequently, by the time one party reaches out to a Pennsylvania divorce lawyer, the couple has been separated for at least several months.
In a few cases, a petitioner asks for a fault-based divorce, on the basis of something like adultery or cruelty. Additionally, in a few other cases, a separation agreement is preferable to a complete divorce. The parties remain legally married, but the judge makes orders concerning child custody and property division.
The next step is serving the petition. If the respondent’s whereabouts are unknown, or the respondent refuses to accept personal service, alternative methods, such as publication or posting, are available. A few judges also allow service via Facebook, Twitter, or other social media platforms.
About two weeks after the petition is filed, the judge usually holds a temporary hearing. At this hearing, the judge makes interim determinations in areas like child support, child custody, and spousal support matters.
Technically, these orders expire when the judge finalizes the divorce. But the temporary orders often become permanent. Typically, the temporary orders form the blueprint for the final orders. There is an old saying that possession is nine-tenths of the law. Once judges make certain orders, they usually do not retract or amend them unless there is substantial evidence supporting such a move.
This evidence usually surfaces during the divorce discovery process. Since most divorces have emotional and financial issues, divorce discovery usually has an emotional and financial component.
If child custody is an issue, mostly judges order social studies. A social worker evaluates the case and makes a custody/visitation recommendation. This recommendation is not technically binding, but it is practically binding.
Financial discovery usually involves document reviews and document exchanges. Pennsylvania law requires both parties to put all their cards on the table. Special rules apply for military divorces or if a family-owned business is involved.
Only a small percentage of divorce cases go to trial. Out of court settlements resolve almost all these matters. These settlements reduce legal fees by hastening the end of the case and give the participants more control over the outcome.
The family’s circumstances never remain the same for long. When financial or emotional circumstances materially and substantially change, a divorce modification is usually in order.
Reach Out to a Diligent Montgomery County Divorce Attorney
Divorce usually involves emotional and financial issues. For a confidential consultation with an experienced family law attorney in Montgomery County, contact Kardos, Rickles & Hand. After-hours, virtual, and home visits are available.