When you see the terms “contested” and “uncontested” as they apply to Florida divorce or dissolution of marriage proceedings they are referring to the terms. If the divorcing couple can agree to divorce terms the action is said to be uncontested. If they cannot, the couple is engaged in a contested divorce proceeding.
The terms that will be on the table include the division of shared or community property as well as any debt that the couple may have mutually incurred. There is also the matter of alimony or spousal support, which is a payment made from one former spouse to the other either temporarily or permanently. Spousal support is not always going to be appropriate since neither former spouse has the inherent responsibility of supporting the other after a dissolution of marriage.
The last set of terms involve the children if indeed the divorcing couple has children together. These would be child custody, a schedule of visitation or a shared parenting schedule, and child support.
Most people would assume that a significant percentage of dissolution of marriage proceedings are contested given the sensitive nature of the terms that must be decided. But the fact is that the vast majority of divorces are uncontested, and this is a good thing for all concerned.
Contested divorces are time consuming and expensive, and they also tend to leave hard feelings in their wake. If both parties are being cooperative when they are working on the terms while honestly seeking a fair resolution there is no reason why they shouldn’t be able to reach an agreement. After going through a period of turmoil leading up to the divorce, most people simply want to leave the hard feelings behind and take the high road as they move forward into the next phase of their lives.
If you are going through an uncontested divorce you would do well to consult with an experienced Tampa FL family lawyer to be certain that your interests are being served.