divorce in philadelphia

People generally think of marriage in romantic terms, and as divorce in the exact opposite way, but at its most basic both marriage and divorce are simply legal procedures. A marriage represents a contract between two people, and a divorce dissolves that contract legally. There is no doubt that it can be an emotional and challenging time, and the legal requirements can seem overwhelming. The more you understand the process for filing divorce in Philadelphia, the more in control you will feel. The attorneys at Reinherz & Reinherz Law Offices have helped many individuals and couples navigate their divorce, and are available to provide you with legal representation and guidance as well.

  • To file for divorce in Philadelphia, it is necessary to have lived in the state of Pennsylvania for at least six months and for one or both of you to have lived in Philadelphia county.
  • Pennsylvania law establishes grounds for divorce as either Fault or No-Fault. It is rare for couples to file for a Fault divorce, which indicates being guilty of desertion, adultery, cruel and barbarous treatment, having one spouse sentenced to prison for two or more years, having on spouse committed to a mental institution for 18 months or more, or other harmful behavior. Most divorces are No-Fault, which means either there has been an irretrievable breakdown of the marriage or the divorce is by mutual consent.
  • You will need to gather a number of documents, including your marriage certificate, any financial or estate planning documents, pre or postnuptial agreements, tax returns and pay stubs, bank account statements, etc.
  • File a basic complaint of divorce along with the marriage certificate, a domestic relations information sheet, and the required fee to Family Court and have it served to your spouse. You will need proof of service, and your spouse will have time to respond, present their own claim, or object to your complaint.
  • Where economic claims for spousal support, child support, and division of property exist, both sides will be required to submit appropriate documents, including an inventory of all assets and property, income and expenses.
  • A Master’s Hearing will be held to go over all of the economic documents. The Master will make a recommendation regarding resolution, and if both parties do not agree then the case goes before a judge. If there are child custody claims, they will also be heard by a Master or Conciliator, though this happens in a different proceeding.
  • Where a judge’s ruling is objectionable to either party, an appeal can be made to the Superior Court of Pennsylvania.

The process can be complex, time-consuming and expensive, and can cause even deeper rifts to form. At Reinherz & Reinherz Law Offices, we work to help you find a way to get through the process for filing for divorce in Philadelphia as quickly as possible while working to provide you with the outcome that you want. Contact us today to set up an appointment to discuss your situation.

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