Clarksville Divorce information

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In Tennessee, divorce proceedings are generally referred to as either contested or uncontested.

Uncontested Divorce

When a divorce is uncontested, it means that you and your spouse can agree on all the issues related to ending your marriage. You both agree that you need to get a divorce, you agree on dividing any property and debt that you have, and, if you have children, you agree on issues regarding parenting time and child support.

To have an uncontested divorce, both you and your spouse have to sign a martial dissolution agreement, which is a written document that outlines how you divide any property and debts you have and addresses any agreement regarding spousal support (alimony). Also, if you have children, you and your spouse have to sign a written parenting plan and complete a child support worksheet.

Another document known as a complaint for divorce along with the martial dissolution agreement and parenting plan, if needed, are filed with the court clerk.  Next, you must wait for 60 days (or 90 days if you have children) before your divorce can be approved by the court.

An uncontested divorce is less expensive and can be less tramtic than a contested divorce.

Contested Divorce

A contested divorce means that you and your spouse cannot agree on one or more issues related to ending your marriage. Generally, you must first show that you have grounds for divorce. Tennessee recognizes several grounds for divorce including, impotency, adultery, desertion, habitual drunkenness or drug abuse, cruel treatment, inappropriate marital conduct, and abandonment/non-support.

Also, under most circumstances, you and your spouse will have to participate in mediation prior to having a court decide the final issues related to your divorce. In the mediation process, both you and your attorney and your spouse and his/her attorney work with a trained mediator to reach agreement on contested issues.

If you cannot resolve all of your issues by agreement or by mediation, you and your spouse will have a trial before a judge who will decide if there are grounds for divorce, how to divide your property and debts, parenting time and child support (if there are minor children), issues regarding spousal support, and any other issues relating to the divorce. A contested divorce requires more time, expense and attorney’s fees than an uncontested divorce.

If you need further information regarding your rights and responsibilities in divorce, then please contact us.


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