When You Or Your Spouse Contests A Proposed Divorce Settlement
Many people who hear the term “contested divorce” mistakenly think it refers to different views between spouses about whether to get divorced or not. In fact, however, no-fault divorce laws in Wisconsin have already settled that question. An individual seeking a divorce does not have to give reasons for wanting a divorce as Wisconsin is a no-fault state. A “no-fault state” means neither spouse must prove that the other has done anything wrong in order for the divorce to be granted. The only fact that a spouse must testify to is that he or she believes that the marriage is irretrievably broken.
A divorce can be granted on the petition of just one spouse believing the marriage is irretrievably broken. So, even if you do not want a divorce and your spouse does, or vice versa., the divorce can move forward. The issues to be determined are as follows:
- Whether either of you will pay child support or spousal support (maintenance) to the other
- How you will divide property (assets and debts)
- How the two of you, in separate households, will raise your children . This includes determining who should have legal custody (decision-making) as well as what the placement arrangements will be.
If you agree on the bullet points above, your divorce is uncontested and may proceed smoothly as long as a family court judge approves your agreements. If you do not agree, your divorce is contested. Finding solutions to a contested divorce usually requires legal counsel for one or both spouses. At Nelson, Krueger & Millenbach, LLC our attorneys help clients push through despite their spouses’ objections to the terms of their divorces.
How Long Does A Contested Divorce Take?
In Wisconsin, you must wait a minimum of 120 days to finalize your divorce. The total length of time necessary to complete your contested divorce will depend on factors such as the following:
- How strongly you and your spouse disagree on financial and/or child custody and support
- How complex your marital estate is
- How difficult it is to arrive at a settlement
A lengthy divorce is often very expensive! Finding alternative paths to litigation, such as mediation, may be the best thing you can do for yourself as you go through a painful and expensive contested divorce. Our divorce lawyers will assist you in the mediation process.
Resolve Your Contested Divorce
You may resolve the contested elements of your divorce through settlement negotiations, mediation or litigation. A courtroom battle is rarely in anyone’s best interests, even in the case of a high-asset divorce. Most people hope to avoid arguing about marital problems, private family finances and parent-child bonds in a public courtroom. Let our attorneys help you find your way around any obstacle. You can protect your rights and get on with your life.
To schedule a consultation with a divorce attorney at Nelson, Krueger & Millenbach, LLC, call 414-939-0529 or email us.