Experienced and Compassionate
Legal Services for Divorce

When a marriage is irretrievably broken, dissolution of marriage may be the only answer for spouses seeking a new life. Divorce is difficult on an emotional level and has long-lasting implications for legal and financial matters. Every divorce’s circumstances are unique. It is critical to hire an experienced family law attorney as an advisor and advocate through each stage. At Sparrow & Fairchild, Attorneys at Law, we offer comprehensive and compassionate legal services for both contested and uncontested divorce proceedings. We listen to our clients’ challenges and offer a course of action to help them achieve a favorable outcome. 

Regular and Simplified Divorce Proceedings

In a regular dissolution of marriage, either spouse can file a petition to dissolve a marriage in the county where they reside. Both parties must provide detailed financial affidavits, and if there are children involved, they must complete a child-guideline worksheet. The court may mandate mediation services as an opportunity for the spouses to compromise on the divorce terms. If mediation fails to provide a mutually agreeable settlement, a family court judge will determine a divorce settlement. Important matters include property division, spousal support, attorney’s fees, and a parenting plan detailing child support for children from the marriage. 

 

To qualify for a simplified dissolution of marriage, spouses must meet specific requirements, including: 

  • There are no dependent children under the age of 18 
  • Both parties must agree to the simplified process 
  • One or both of the spouses must have resided in Florida for the past six months 
  • Neither party can be seeking alimony 
  • Both parties must agree on the division of their assets and debts 

What is Equitable Distribution?

Florida is an equitable distribution state, meaning that the marital assets are divided fairly and equitably. A couple’s finances are separated into non-marital and marital assets and debts. Essentially, those assets and debts incurred before marriage remain the ownership of the spouse that acquired them. It can include property, business ventures, inheritances, credit card debt, and more. Assets and debts acquired during the marriage, either solely or together, belong to both spouses. However, a judge determines equitable distribution on a case-by-case basis, subject to his discretion. Some considerations are the length of a marriage and the contributions to the marriage by each spouse. 

Domestic Violence and Divorce

Spousal abuse in marriage often results in divorce. Allegations of abuse between spouses complicate divorce proceedings. Florida’s domestic violence laws are designed to protect spouses and household members during the dissolution of marriage. These unfortunate circumstances significantly impact the outcome of a divorce, especially regarding child custody and visitation agreements. In some instances, it can affect spousal support if the abuse adversely affects a victim’s ability to be self-supporting. 

Know your Legal Rights and Obligations

At Sparrow & Fairchild, Attorneys at Law, we will help you navigate the elements of divorce law, as they are relevant to your situation. We compassionately handle all aspects of divorce and the legal complications associated with domestic violence. Attorney Jimmie Sparrow is a former police officer, detective, and prosecutor. Attorney Lee Fairchild is a former public defender who is highly skilled in family law and criminal defense. They are well-versed in the intertwining of family and criminal law and how they affect divorce proceedings. 

Call Sparrow & Fairchild, Attorneys at Law for skillful, experienced, and supportive legal representation for divorce in Central Florida. We offer custom strategies and solutions to meet our client’s legal needs. Contact us at 352-421-9261. We represent clients in Marion, Citrus, Lake, Sumter, and Alachua Counties.