Pennsylvania has very flexible divorce lawsthat make it easy for the divorcing parties to choose from several options. Despite this, however, you must understand the different types of divorce obtainable in the state and how you can process them. It’s also important to talk to a divorce attorney in West Chester, PA, about your plans and how you want things to go.
There’re four types of divorce in PA, and this article will be discussing them.
1. Mutual Consent Divorce
Also known as a “no contest” divorce, it’s the most common type. Here, both parties get to file an affidavit and other documents consenting to the separation ninety days after serving the divorce complaint upon the defendant, after which the judge can sign off on it. Issues like custody, child support, alimony, estate distribution, etc., get worked out during these 90 days, with a written settlement drawn up and signed for that purpose.
The parties then sign a Separation Agreement, which the judge adopts as an Order of Court. If the separating individuals disagree on specific significant issues, a hearing comes up where the court will decide on such matters.
While parties can represent themselves at divorce proceedings, the presence of a divorce attorney in West Chester PA, would be a wiser decision.
2. Two-Year Separation Divorce
You can also call it a “no-fault” divorce. The two-year separation divorce is instrumental in cases where one of the parties remains adamant on not signing an affidavit to consent to the divorce. The other party can wait until the separation clocks at least two years, after which they can sign an affidavit clearly stating that the separation has existed for at least two years and that the marriage no longer functioning.
The party that wants to divorce must issue the affidavit to the other party. If the latter fails to respond within a set duration, the court will go ahead and grant the divorce. However, if the defendant files a counter-affidavit denying the two-year separation, there’ll be a legal hearing where the court will decide if it should grant the divorce request.
3. Fault Divorce
In this case, this plaintiff or the party seeking the divorce must convince the master at a hearing that they’re innocent of any wrongdoing and that the other party is solely at fault. They must also present evidence of misconduct, such as proving that the defender has mistreated them, endangered the plaintiff’s life, committed adultery, or has been in prison for at least two years.
Many people don’t consider this divorce type because it’s highly costly as both parties must pay attorney charges. They must also pay someone known as the master who hears the case and the stenographer the records all testimonies.
In a case where the defendant proves that the plaintiff isn’t innocent, the matter may be subject to denial by the court.
4. Mental Hospital Divorce
In this type of divorce, the court can grant the separation request if there’s irrefutable proof that the defendant has been in a mental care facility for the last 18 months due to a severe mental illness, and the plaintiff expects them to be there at least another 18 months.
To save yourself needless complications and stress, ensure you have the best representation in a divorce attorney in West Chester, PA.