What you Need to Know
about Florida Divorce

Divorce in Florida

The Florida Divorce rate is 50%+, so the difficult decision to get a divorce in Florida means that you must have adequate knowledge of Florida Divorce Laws. Florida is a no-fault state meaning if you want to get a Florida divorce you will regardless of whether your spouse agrees or not. If you are on the verge of a divorce, paying a large retainer to a Florida divorce lawyer to prepare your divorce paperwork is not required most of the time. However, trying to navigate the legal maze of the Florida court system and online divorce world on your own or hiring a non-lawyer to get you through the divorce process could be a disastrous and costly mistake.

Once you have made the difficult decision to get an affordable divorce, you have options:

• Self-Help Center at your local courthouse:
Most of Florida’s 67 counties, including Orlando, FL and Jacksonville, FL, have Self-Help Centers which are not run by a divorce lawyer; rather, the clerk of courts, not a divorce attorney. They cannot prepare your divorce paperwork (marital settlement agreement included) and are not permitted to give legal advice about the Florida divorce process, Florida child support laws (check out our Florida child support calculator) or alimony in Florida. It is considered the unlicensed practice of law and is a crime for anyone other than a lawyer to give advice about the Florida divorce process. The clerks will sell you a package of documents and help you fill in the blanks. The same package of divorce forms you purchase from a self help center can be found online for FREE.

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• Do it yourself (pro se’):
You can attempt to prepare all required legal documents yourself. However, BEWARE as you run the risk of doing the divorce paperwork incorrectly, becoming confused by the mass of legal forms, missing time sensitive deadlines, trying to figure out Florida child custody laws and maybe even missing a necessary document which will most assuredly cause delay. In some counties, your case will be assigned to the pro se’ judge who handles only folks who are attempting to do it themselves. Your divorce facts may warrant Legal Aid depending on your income.

• Paralegal or Document Preparation Service:
A paralegal (a person who works for a lawyer) or company that prepares online divorce papers cannot give advice about Florida divorce law. When questions arise (for instance about a military divorce) or you reach an impasse and a court hearing is required, paralegals are specifically prohibited from providing legal advice and cannot make court appearances. The bottom line is that your divorce should be handled by a divorce attorney – plain and simple.

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• Retain an Attorney:
Retainer fees can be very expensive and, in our humble opinion, are not necessary most of the time. An initial consultation may be anywhere from $200 - $500 per hour just to talk. If you’ve got money to burn or simply want to extract a pound of flesh from your spouse, the initial retainer fee may be anywhere from $1,500.00 - $15,000.00.

DivorceDeli.com, the low cost Divorce Law Firm is your best alternative if you are looking for a low cost divorce (some would say cheap divorce) by experienced Florida attorneys. Getting a Florida Divorce is a serious matter and you must be well versed in Florida divorce laws in order for your divorce in Florida to go off without a hitch.

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