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General Steps in Divorce Process

  1. Initial Consultation – This can be either over the phone or in person (though in person is preferable). At this meeting you will fill out a questionnaire and you will explain to the attorney what your case will be about and what you would like to ultimately finish your case with. You will also receive the documents that you will have to complete for your Discovery Phase (See #3).

  2. Drafting of Documents
    1. If you are initiating the divorce, this is when the Petition and its accompanying documents will be drafted, filed and given to the process server for service.

    2. If you are responding to an already filed Divorce, this is when the Answer to the Petition and Counter-Petition will be filed.

    3. If you and your spouse have already come to an agreement, this is when your Settlement Agreement will be drafted and provided to you for your review and approval.

  3. Discovery
    1. You and your spouse must exchange financial information (i.e. tax returns, paystubs, retirement account statements, bank statements, credit card statements, loan statements, etc.) and Financial Affidavits

    2. If you and your spouse have already come to an agreement and a Settlement Agreement is being drafted this phase can be waived. However, you both will still need to complete Financial Affidavits. From this point onward you will skip ahead directly to #5 Final Hearing.

  4. Mediation – After the exchange of Discovery is completed, Mediation will be coordinated. If the combined income between you and your spouse is less than $100,000.00 per year, every effort will be made to coordinate State Subsidized Mediation which is substantially cheaper than Private Mediation. Mediation is your chance to attempt settlement with your Spouse. Mediation is informal and NOT in front of the Judge. Though you are encouraged to make a good faith attempt to settle your issues, no one will force you into signing a settlement agreement.

  5. Final Hearing/Trial
    1. If you and your spouse have come to an agreement and have signed a Settlement Agreement, the final step in the divorce process is Final Hearing. You will appear before the Judge, the Judge will ask a few simple questions, and your divorce will be complete.

    2. If you and your spouse were unable to come to an agreement, the final step in the divorce is trial. Trial is extremely time consuming and very costly.

Client Reviews
Carmen G. Soto, PA and her amazing legal team is Excellent!!!! represented my daughter during divorce and we would absolutely recommend her!! Thank you and GOD BLESS YOU!! Ing. Delgado and Family
Carmen G. Soto, is an excellent attorney. She is very patient, knowledgeable, professional and my favorite.... flexible with payment plans. I was in need of an attorney to secure my sons future, and Carmen with her knowledge and experience provided the support we needed. I can honestly say that as a man/father we never get a fair chance in the courtrooms concerning family matters but Carmen made sure the Court systems saw past that stigma and justice was rightfully served. I would highly recommend Carmen G. Soto and her staff. Anonymous
Never having to use an attorney before, I was quite nervous and skeptical about my first meeting. Carmen Soto, not only made my first experience very comfortable, but was very informative and quite knowledgeable in the field of family law and divorce. She was there every step of the way for me as a support system, and her confidence and expertise made my otherwise very difficult situation, a very positive one. I highly recommend Carmen Soto. She is an excellent and compassionate attorney who clearly outlines all your options and takes a personal interest in your individual situation. Anonymous