Divorce Lawyers in Jacksonville, Florida.

Trust the Divorce Experts at McGRATH GIBSON

Divorce Lawyers in Jacksonville Florida

The Experienced Advice and Guidance You Need.

The MCGRATH GIBSON divorce lawyers in Jacksonville, Florida have been the choice for many that were faced with divorce over the years. Divorce is rarely easy and it is most often a complex matter to sort through, especially at such an emotional time. Our experience with divorce allows us to help clients better manage the end of their marriage and all of the questions and decisions that arise. There is life after divorce, and our goal is to help you through every step of way and in the end, achieve the best possible outcome for you and your children.

Marital Property Division.

Most marriages result in a couple accumulating “Marital Assets”; personal property and financial assets that are acquired during the marriage. And the division of these assets and personal property is often a complicated area of divorce and a considerable area of concern for both parties.

If the parties negotiate and decide themselves without disagreement on who will receive what. Marital assets can be divided using a property agreement. This is the preferred method of dividing marital assets because the parties know more about their assets than the courts, and the courts must accept a property agreement signed by both parties.

If the parties cannot agree on how to divide marital assets, the court will get involved and try to divide the assets equally. However, if one or the other parties can show justification for unequal treatment, Assets may not be divided equally.

Marital Property Division

Understanding Divorce in Jacksonville, Florida.

There are any number of reasons and circumstances that might lead to divorce. But once the decision is made, there are two legal options available in Florida for bringing about an end to a marriage; A “Marriage Annulment”, or a “Dissolution of Marriage”.

Marriage Annulment:

Annulment is a process by which a judgment is sought to determine that a marriage is invalid. The grounds for a marriage annulment must have existed at the time of the marriage or when the parties were married. These grounds are as follows:

  • Lack of consent – An essential requirement for the validity of marriage is mutual consent. A finding of lack of mutual assent, duress, or fraud that goes to the essentials of marriage is grounds for annulment.
  • Lack of capacity – A marriage may be ratified, (validated) by continuing the relationship once capacity has returned.
  • No intent to be bound.
  • Purpose of obtaining citizenship.
  • Bigamy or Polygamy – If there is sufficient proof of a prior undissolved marriage, any subsequent marriage is void.
  • Incestuous marriages – Marriages in which the parties are too closely related are prohibited, whether the relationship is by whole blood or half blood. It is a felony to knowingly violate this law.
  • Blood relatives.
  • Adoptive Relatives – may marry as long as they are not blood or half blood related.
  • Nonage – The period during which one is legally underage.
  • Incurable physical impotence.

In Florida your divorce lawyer can defend an annulment procedure by arguing laches and ratification. “Laches” is based on the legal maxim “Equity aids the vigilant, not those who slumber on their rights.” Laches recognizes that a party to an action can lose evidence, witnesses, and a fair chance to defend himself or herself after the passage of time from the date the wrong was committed. If the defendant’s divorce lawyer can show disadvantages because for a long time he or she relied on the fact that no lawsuit would be started, then the case should be dismissed in the interests of justice. The laches defense, like most of equity law, is a general concept containing many variations on the maxim. Phrases used to describe laches include “delay that works to the disadvantage of another,” “inexcusable delay coupled with prejudice to the party raising the defense,” “failure to assert rights,” “lack of diligence,” and “neglect or omission to assert a right” which are more commonly raised. Or that the alleged impediment to the marriage does not exist.

Alimony generally cannot be granted after a marriage is annulled, however temporary alimony is available during the pendency of proceedings.

Divorce or Dissolution of Marriage:

Florida has a “no fault divorce” system, it liberalizes the grounds required for a dissolution, and provides for the possibility of alimony for either party.

Divorce is an equity action in Florida and takes place in the Circuit Courts. One of the parties to the marriage must be a resident of FL for 6 months prior to filing the dissolution petition, or active duty military who’s home of record is in the state of Florida. Courts look at the intent to be a Florida resident and residency must be corroborated, typically with a Florida drivers license. Divorce proceedings may be brought against out-of-state residents. A dissolution petition should be filed in the circuit court in the county where the breach occurred, where the marriage last existed intact, or where the spouse lives. O, if active duty military, in their home of record county. Remember venue and jurisdiction are two different concepts and should be discussed with your divorce attorney.

Florida Courts require certain grounds or reasons to grant a dissolution petition. Objective proof must exist that one of the following statutory grounds for dissolution is present: whether the marriage is irretrievably broken, or that there has been mental incompetency for three years.

There are two general types of dissolution proceedings; uncontested and contested. Uncontested is when the parties agree on the issues and file a Consent Final Judgment of Dissolution with the Court, the court will then review it and grant it thereby dissolving the marriage. A contested dissolution is a divorce case where the parties cannot agree and the court will takes evidence from both sides and makes a decision on the issues of the divorce, very similar to civil litigation.

Good Advice for Those Facing Divorce

If you are facing divorce and need a divorce lawyer in Jacksonville, Florida, schedule a consultation as soon as possible by calling (904) 358-3300 or use the form below. There are a number of things you need to know to assure your happiness and well being after your divorce is finalized. In the mean time, follow these points:

  • Try to remain calm. You will be thinking of many things and will more than likely be emotional. Do not make emotional decisions. Call your divorce lawyer. It is always better to have someone to speak to and to know they are in your corner.
  • Use your divorce lawyer as your buffer. Once you have retained your divorce lawyer, there is no need to have potentially heated or emotionally charged discussions. Simply differ all questions or problems to your lawyer.
  • Try to avoid voluntarily leaving your home if children are involved, unless of course your personal safety is at risk. If you feel you should leave your home without your children in order to protect yourself, get to a safe location and let your divorce lawyer know immediately.
  • Begin to organize and prepare for court. Your lawyer will need copies of your tax returns, all financial and banking records, and documents pertaining to any other financial assets. They will also need to know of all personal property acquired during your marriage.
  • Trust your divorce lawyer and understand that your spouse will most likely resent your divorce lawyer and attempt to undermine the advice you are being given.
  • It is best not to discuss the details of your divorce with neighbors and friends. Be very general when asked how things are going by friends and family.
  • Do not post anything about yourself, your spouse our your divorce online! And remember that any electronic communications such as email, instant messaging, voice mail can come back to haunt you. Never say, record or post anything that you would not say in court.
  • Do not sign anything or make any agreements without speaking to your lawyer first.

Contact Us

Trust the family law attorneys of McGRATH GIBSON for the answers, representation, and results you need in these most important personal legal matters. Call us to schedule a consultation at (904) 358-3300, or use our contact form below and we’ll get back to you as quickly as possible.

Family Law and Divorce Attorneys in Jacksonville, Florida Disclaimer:

The lawyers of McGRATH GIBSON are licensed to practice in the states of Florida, Georgia, and North Carolina. Additionally, we represent clients throughout the United States pro hoc vice, and with the help of local counsel. While we strive to personally handle all types of divorce and family law cases, there are occasions where we may feel it is in the interest of the client to refer their case to another lawyer. We proudly offer representation to Military Veterans and the Men and Women who currently serve in our armed forces at the Mayport Naval Station, Naval Air Station of Jacksonville, Camp Blanding, United States Army, Army Reserve, United States Marines, Florida National Guard, Air National Guard, United States Coast Guard, Air Force, Air Force Reserve and Space Force.

McGRATH GIBSON family law attorneys offer representation in the areas of Family Law throughout Florida. We represent in cases of Divorce, Property division, Alimony and Maintenance, Child Custody, Child Support and Child Visitation. We represent active duty military in Military Divorce cases which is handled throughout the United States and U.S. Territories independently and with local counsel where required.

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