Frequently Asked Questions


There is no way to predict how much your case will cost. There are many factors that go into a litigious action such as how aggressive opposing counsel is, the work involved, how motivated your spouse is to settle; experts that may need to be retained, hearings and depositions that may need to be set, etc. Likewise, for similar reasons, it is impossible to determine how long the case will last. That said, if amicable, it can go quite quickly and be done in a month’s time. If highly contested, it can take a year or more.

Try not to compare your divorce to a friend’s divorce. Each case, the parties, and their financial and family situation are specific and one friend’s divorce action is not indicative of the outcome of your divorce proceeding.

In our practice we believe it is imperative that our clients are actively involved in their cases, which means keeping you apprised of all communication and filings with the Court so that you are informed and up to date as to the progress of your case.  If there is any action required on your part as to the document being sent, we will advise accordingly.  We like to educate our clients and keep them informed as the decisions made will have an impact on all aspects of their life.

This varies greatly.  Getting in front of your Judge requires coordinating hearings with the Judge’s availability as well as opposing counsel’s.  Depending on the Judge assigned to your case and his/her Court calendar, it could sometimes take a couple of weeks, but it is not unusual to get a hearing six to eight weeks in the future.

We highly recommend counseling as it helps greatly in dealing with the emotional ups and downs that come with any divorce or court proceeding.  The attorneys are always here for you, but we have not been trained in family counseling or therapy.  However, we are familiar with counselors, therapists, and psychologists in the area and are happy to give you their contact information should you desire.  A divorce has a major impact and is a loss.  It helps to have a professional to talk to during this process.

The Florida Family Law Rules of Procedure (the rules that govern dissolution of marriage cases in Florida) require that in most dissolution proceedings each party file a financial affidavit that lists the parties’ income, expenses, assets and liabilities and swears, under oath, that it’s an accurate reflection of same.  Along with that, supporting documentation, i.e. mandatory disclosure, is required.  These documents either support the information in the financial affidavit or show any discrepancies.  We do not know your particular financial situation, but by you providing us this information, we can have a better understanding of your particular financial picture.  It also allows opposing counsel, who is similarly unfamiliar with your family’s finances, to become aware of the same.  Please note that the mandatory disclosure of documents requirement can be waived by the parties if they both agree; however, if you do not know your financial picture (or that of your spouse’s), then mandatory disclosure is a tool that is available for that purpose.

No.  It is general practice among family law attorneys to request in a divorce petition as much as the client may be entitled to under Florida law (in a perfect world).  Rarely does the client actually receive everything that they originally asked for in the divorce petition when the case ultimately concludes.  You should also note that if your spouse files a divorce petition, you will have an opportunity to file an Answer to the petition, wherein you can admit or deny the allegations contained in the petition.  Similarly, you will also have the opportunity to file your own counter-petition for divorce, wherein you can request as much as you may be entitled to under Florida law (in a perfect world), though again you likely will not receive everything you ask for when the case concludes.

In Florida, the parties are required to attend at least 1 session of mediation before they can go to the Court to ask for temporary relief (such as the payment by a spouse of temporary support or temporary attorneys’ fees for the other spouse).  In general, mediation will occur within the first 2-4 months of your case (depending on the circumstances).  If you agree to a settlement at mediation, then no assistance from the court is needed.  However, if some or all of your case does not settle at mediation, then you may thereafter schedule a hearing to request temporary (or permanent) relief from the Court.

Mediation is an alternative dispute resolution system wherein each of the parties (you and your spouse), their attorneys, and a neutral third-party mediator will meet to discuss the issues in the case and a possible settlement thereof.  Typically, all of the participants will begin the mediation by meeting together with the mediator to discuss how mediation will proceed.  The parties and their respective attorneys will usually then split into 2 separate rooms, during which the mediator will alternate between the rooms to try to effectuate a settlement.   Your attorney will be in the room with you to discuss potential settlement offers and to advise you of any offers or counter-offers made by your spouse.

Please note that it is our practice to work with you to put together in advance of mediation a settlement proposal and to have a pre-mediation meeting wherein we can discuss the settlement proposal and mediation strategy.  Our goal is for you to enter mediation with a proposal in hand and an understanding of how mediation will transpire and the issues involved in your case.  Mediation has proven to be a particularly successful tool in resolving family law cases.  Though there is no guarantee that your case will settle at mediation, many cases do.

First, trial can be extremely expensive.  Preparing for trial entails, among other things, attending pre-trial hearings, taking depositions, gathering evidence, preparing exhibits, etc., all of which will cost money.  Second, at trial a judge, who is at best only moderately familiar with your case, will decide the outcome of the issues involved.  Accordingly, the outcome is entirely unpredictable.  If, however, you settle your case in advance of trial, then you and your spouse will each have a say in how the issues are resolved.