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How Long Does a Divorce Take?

The marriage dissolution, or divorce, process can take from a few weeks to years, depending on the specific situation involved. The main factors determining the length of the proceedings are whether the parties agree to a divorce, whether they agree on all matters involving the divorce and whether the couple has children.

There are two types of divorce: uncontested and contested. An uncontested divorce is typically the faster and easier process. In an uncontested divorce, the parties agree that there should be a divorce and reach an agreement that lays out the terms of the divorce. If there are no children between the parties, an uncontested divorce can be approved by a court administratively. If there are children, a hearing before a judge will be required to approve the agreement.

In the more complicated and often longer process of contested divorce, one spouse may argue against the divorce or both parties may fail to agree on the terms of the divorce, such as how the marital property should be split. When a divorce is contested, the parties may have to go through mediation or litigation to hammer out issues such as spousal support.

When children are involved, the process may be more drawn out. When custody is contested, this process can take much longer. In cases where there are disputes about custody, other issues often become contested as well. When there are complex issues of custody and property division, it is not unheard of for couples to spend years litigating these matters.

For help understanding the divorce process, speak with a family law attorney at the Minnesota firm of Appelhof, Pfeifer & Hart, P.A.

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  • "Tori had a thorough understanding of my situation and made excellent recommendations to resolve my concerns. She was persistent on communication and handled everything in a very timely manner. I would definitely hire her again in the future if needed." - M.K.

  • "With Appelhof, Pfeifer & Hart, P.A., it is like having a family physician. They are all knowledgeable, thorough, comforting, and the only call I need to make for all my legal needs for many years to come. No matter what the matter, I totally trust their advice and commitment to me and my family." - J.N.

  • "Mary from APH Law helped me thru a difficult divorce. She and the entire staff was there for me every step of the way helping me on what to do next. They listened to what I wanted and helped me achieve what matter the most to me in the divorce settlement." - Dana C.

  • "I chose APH after my initial consultation with Mary. I felt my best interest would be represented. The entire process went excellent, the attorneys and staff communicated effectively and efficiently with me throughout the process as they needed to. Being new to the legal process and verbiage, they walked me and talked me through the next steps and the jargon, I felt completely comfortable and represented. I hope I never have to use legal services again but if I do I will call Mary at APH Law and know that I will be taken care of." - Jeff M.

  • "Divorce is a time of emotion and stress. Mary Pfeifer , My lawyer was professional and compassionate. She was very informative through the process. Her insight helped me in my decisions. She worked hard to obtain a settlement which was fair to both parties.Though, I hope I won't need her help again. It is reassuring to know a good person that is willing to help." - Rod S.

  • "I first came to Ms. Jacquelyn Lutz of Appelhof, Pfeifer and Hart in October of 2016. It was definitely the worst time in my life and she compassionately spoke with me about my options. Ms. Lutz thoroughly explained the laws, statutes, process and what to expect going forward. What was supposed to be one case, turned into three intricate cases that took a huge toll on me and my family. Ms. Lutz represented me in court on all three cases with a vast knowledge of the laws and how to proceed accordingly. During all three cases she kept me informed, calm, gave me resources to utilize, and (most important) gave me a realistic view of what may come next. Ms. Lutz knew each case required a great deal of knowledge and creative thinking on how to legally proceed forward with each case. My family and friends are forever grateful for the amazing representation by Ms. Lutz. I highly recommend Ms. Lutz for anyone needing or considering superb representation for any kind of family law. " - M.H.


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