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Family law - is an uncontested divorce as easy as it sounds?

When a New Jersey couple decides to put an end to their marriage, they will have two options. Family law allows couples to file uncontested or contested divorces. More and more people choose to avoid litigation and instead try to negotiate their own settlement agreements.

The process of an uncontested divorce requires spouses to come together and draft a settlement agreement with which both parties are satisfied. They must then review the final agreement and request changes where necessary. When both sides approve of the details of the document, it must be signed by both and notarized before filing it with the clerk of the court. If the court approves of the settlement agreement, it will incorporate it in the final divorce decree.

However, before the court issues a final judgment, there will be a final hearing. State law will determine whether both parties must be present or only the petitioner. This process is necessary to prove up the divorce, and personal particulars along with answers to other pertinent questions will have to be provided. If the court requires changes to the settlement agreement, it will order those at this time.

Although this might all sound easy to accomplish, care must be taken to ensure nothing is left unaddressed that might lead to litigation in the future. For this reason, it might be wise to retain the services of an experienced New Jersey family law attorney, even if it is an uncontested divorce. Along with much-needed support and guidance, a lawyer can provide valuable input during the negotiation process.

Source:, "What is Uncontested Divorce?", Oct. 19, 2017

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