Getting a divorce can be a complicated process if a Florida couple shares children, assets, and other items of property. Once they have filed their petitions and have begun the steps of untangling their lives from one another, the parties may have many difficult decisions to make to ensure that they are able to smoothly transition into single life. Some people wish to end their marriages as fast as possible, and while a timely end to a marriage might be possible for some, the state’s waiting period requires all divorcing parties endure a short duration of time before their divorces can be finalized.

In Florida divorcing parties must wait 20 days from when their petitions to divorce are filed to when their divorces may be finalized. Waiting periods are sometimes informally called “cooling off” periods and they exist to allow individuals to make sure they are certain that they want to end their marriages. A divorce is a final process– once a marriage is terminated it must be reestablished through legal means to be put back together.

The 20 day waiting period is just one of the requirements that Floridians must meet in order to end their marriages in the state’s courts. Additionally, they must meet residency requirements and demonstrate that their marriages are irretrievably broken. Family law attorneys can help their clients meet and plead these and other divorce requirements.

If a couple has no kids, have all of their financial and property matters settled, and is sure its parties want to end their marriage, a divorce can be finalized in 20 days. Most divorces take much longer than the state’s waiting period and are dependent upon individual case factors.