There are several grounds upon which divorces may be granted in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, including adultery, bigamy, imprisonment for two or more years, willful desertion for one or more years and irretrievable breakdown of the marriage, among other things.
Conshohocken divorce attorneys know that, in many cases, deciding to divorce is not an easy decision. However, individuals interested in ending their marriage should work with skilled lawyers who can guide them through the process to make it move along as smoothly as possible.
Steps to Start the Process
If the parties claim the marriage was irretrievably broken and they mutually agree to divorce, they must complete a sworn statement stating such consent. However, if they do not mutually agree to the divorce, each party must complete sworn statements they have lived apart and separate for a period of at least two years.
Parting couples should note that if either party denies the allegations made in the divorce documents and the judge finds there is a reasonable expectation of the parties reconciling, the court may decide to continue the matter for a period up to four months in order for the couple to seek marriage counseling.
Your divorce lawyer will also advise you that prior to filing for divorce in Conshohocken or elsewhere in the state, at least one party must have resided in the state for a period of no less than six months immediately preceding the filing. The filing can take place in the county where either party resides. Parties should also be aware there is a waiting period before the divorce will be finalized. If the couple mutually consented to the divorce, they will still need to wait at least 90 days from filing before the judge will enter a judgment.
What if There are Kids?
Divorce can be made much more difficult if the couple shares children. All too often, parting spouses have differing opinions with respect to who should raise the children. However, when it comes to determining issues surrounding child support and custody, the court will always take into account the best interest of the children first and foremost.
With regard to child support, Pennsylvania’s guidelines consider the parents’ ability to support the child’s needs by looking at their net income and allowing for specific exceptions in instances where there are extraordinary costs and/or unusual needs. Further, the judge will require one of the parents to provide health insurance for the child/children.
Child custody can be a very touchy subject among parents, particularly when both believe they are the best person to care for their child. However, the court uses several factors to determine the best interest of the child, to include looking at whether there has been instances of drug and/or physical abuse by either parent in the past, which parent would likely encourage ongoing contact with the other parent and who would be best to provide a loving and stable environment for the child, among other things.
Divorce can be a trying experience for couples and their families. However, the entire process can be made a bit easier with the help of knowledgeable divorce attorneys. To discuss your case, contact Obermayer Rebmann Maxwell & Hippel LLP at (610) 825-3634 or use our online contact form.