6 Common Steps in the Divorce Process
Every divorce is different. The process varies on whether you mediate, agree to most of the terms of the separation, or have significant issues that will require a fight in court. When you cannot agree on every term in your divorce, you will likely have to go through the full divorce process in Oklahoma.
Below are the most common steps you can expect when going through a divorce in Oklahoma.
1. Retain an Oklahoma divorce attorney.
Before you go through the formal divorce process, it is a good idea to talk with an attorney and have them walk you through the process. They will be able to advise you through the court system and give you a full explanation of your rights and responsibilities under Oklahoma law.
2. File the divorce petition.
The formal divorce process starts with filing a petition. The petition sets out that you have had a breakdown in your relationship, and you are requesting a divorce.
3. The other spouse answers the petition.
The responding spouse will also file an “answer” to your petition. They will respond to the allegations you set out in the petition. Once these two formal documents are filed, the most time-consuming portion of the divorce process can start.
4. Work through the discovery process.
“Discovery” is a legal term that essentially means that you and your attorney will gather information to present your case to a judge. During discovery, you will identify debts and assets, gather witness information, and identify issues where you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse cannot agree. You will exchange information, answer questions, and produce documents.
Your attorney will do a lot of the work in discovery for you, but it can require a great deal of document gathering and assistance with obtaining other information.
5. Go through divorce mediation.
You can work out a settlement with your spouse at any time. However, mediation can be a helpful tool to hammer out issues where you cannot agree. Mediation is often required before you present your case to a judge.
6. Go through court hearings.
You might also have to go through several court hearings that address things like child custody, child support, alimony, and property division during this process. Sometimes these hearings happen right away, so you can address these critical issues while the divorce is pending. Ultimately, the divorce will end by presenting your case to a judge if mediation is unsuccessful.
If you are considering divorce in Oklahoma, give our team at Owens Law Office a call! Our attorneys have years of experience handling a variety of different divorce cases. Our entire team knows how hard it is to go through this process, so we are here to listen to you and make it the smoothest possible for you. Call us today to schedule a confidential consultation!