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Does It Make Any Difference Who Starts The Divorce Proceedings?

Top Orange County divorce lawyers; The Maggio Law FirmIf you are thinking of ending your marriage and are presently contemplating divorce, the most significant thing that you have to do is accept responsibility for your divorce’s outcome. If the end of your marriage is inevitable, there is no other choice than going ahead with the process of the divorce after taking into account all the divorce-related considerations to protect yourself.

Many couples, who are considering divorce, often get confused thinking if there is any difference in who starts the divorce proceedings. Most of the time, it does not matter who starts the proceedings, but it does matter when the other person is signing papers. If your partner has started the proceedings, you should avoid signing any paper till the time you are represented by a lawyer and informed by him about what has to be done legally.

However, there are some legal and financial advantages of being the first to file for divorce.

Legal advantages

The legal advantages of filing first are:

  • Filing first allows you to select where your divorce case will be handled
  • The person who files the divorce petition first may be the first complainant to present his case at trial

 Financial advantages

The financial advantages of filing first are:

  • You can get your team of qualified divorce experts ready beforehand
  • You can collect all the needed legal documentation in advance
  • You can ensure that you have access to credit and funds before filing
  • When the wife files the petition first, she can prevent her husband from hiding assets

What should you do to be the first to start divorce proceedings?

The first step is to file a petition in the court with all information about your marriage, reasons for divorce and any children. You will have to submit the other needed documents to start the proceedings officially and pay the appropriate fee. Once the petition is issued by the court and sent to your partner, you are called the petitioner and your partner is the respondent.

When you partner gets the petition, he or she should file ‘Acknowledgement of Service’ document, a form that confirms that he or she has received the petition and gives certain details to the court. For instance, it indicates whether the divorce is contested or opposed.

Irrespective of who starts the divorce proceedings, it is important to have a strong and qualified team of divorce professionals to guide you and help you through the process.

Getting divorced in California can be complicated.  Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.  

divorce_attorneyGerald A. Maggio is an experienced Orange County divorce and family law attorney and family law attorney located in Irvine, California, serving the Orange County and Riverside areas. Mr. Maggio assists clients with legal issues including divorce, legal separation, divorce mediation, child custody, prenuptial agreements, stepparent adoptions, and other family law issues. Mr. Maggio has practiced law in California since 1999, and founded The Maggio Law Firm in 2005, focusing exclusively on divorce and family law matters.

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