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FAQ – Knoxville Divorce with Minor Children
1. What is an uncontested divorce? An uncontested divorce is just that: a divorce where ALL the marital rights and responsibilities, property distributions and/or minor children issues are agreed upon by both parties.
2. Can I get an uncontested divorce if my spouse and I have not agreed on everything? No uncontested divorce is possible if only one of the parties wants a divorce or if there is a conflict with respect to issues of property, children or other matters. A domestic relations attorney should be consulted if you cannot agree.
3. I have lost contact with my spouse. Can I still obtain an uncontested divorce? It may be possible to obtain a divorce if you cannot find your spouse. However, our office will not accept representation if the current whereabouts of the other spouse are unknown as these matters are not truly uncontested matters. If this situation applies to you, you should obtain the advice of a domestic relations attorney.
4. I don’t live in Knox County. Can I still get a divorce? Yes. Any legal resident of Tennessee may obtain a divorce in Knox County, regardless of actual county of residence if both parties agree to the jurisdiction of a Knox County court.
5. How do I get started with my uncontested divorce? If you are interested in having us represent you, download the appropriate divorce packet and complete the forms under the Forms tab. Please note that completing and sending the forms to us does not mean that we have accepted representation. We will contact you in the event that we are willing to take your case. Once accepted and all fees are paid, our office will usually prepare the necessary paperwork within one to two weeks of receiving the necessary information. Note: Almost all delays in filing a divorce occur because the client did not provide all of the required information in a timely manner.
6. If representation is accepted, will the Owen Law Firm represent both me and my spouse? Due to the ethical rules of legal practice, we will normally only represent one spouse, but not both. We usually leave it to the parties to decide who will be represented. Nothing prevents the other spouse from retaining a lawyer at their discretion and cost, though it may cause delays in the completion of the divorce.
7. How long will it be before my divorce is final? Normally, for spouses with minor children, 90 days after your Complaint is filed. Our office will prepare the necessary paperwork within 1 to 48 hours of receiving the necessary information – usually, the longest delay is caused by the client not providing all of the required information in a timely manner. Note: Tennessee law requires a ninety (90) day waiting period from the date of filing of the Complaint before an uncontested divorce with minor children is final. There are no exceptions to this requirement.
8. How does the uncontested divorce process work? The uncontested divorce is begun by filing a legal document called a Complaint which our office will draw up – along with all other required documents – for you if we represent you. Once all appropriate documentation has been filed, and after the statutory waiting period has passed, our office will submit the appropriate document with the court to finalize your divorce. After you have received the judge’s order, your divorce is final.
9. I have no minor children but I am pregnant. Will I still be able to obtain a divorce? Depending upon the court in which the divorce is filed, the judge may or may not grant a divorce when the wife is pregnant. You will need to speak with the attorney about your options.
10. I am pregnant but the child is not my spouse’s child. Will I still be able to obtain a divorce? This is called a “third party” divorce and it is possible to obtain a divorce while one is pregnant with a third person’s child. There is an additional fee for these situations and you will need to speak with the attorney about your options.
11. Do I have to attend parenting classes to obtain a divorce? Each court has a different requirement regarding attendance at parenting classes. It is best to call the court to determine what its parenting class requirements are and what programs are acceptable to the court. In most cases, courts will require completion of parenting classes either before granting a divorce or within a reasonable time after granting a divorce. You will need to speak with the attorney about your options.