Orlando Divorce Lawyer

People going through divorce, also known as dissolution of marriage in Florida, must navigate complex state laws governing issues like child custody, visitation, alimony, and the division of marital assets. Our experienced Orlando divorce attorneys can protect your best interests during and after your separation, helping you reach resolutions that protect your long-term future and set you up for the next phase of your life.

Written and edited by our team of expert legal content writers and reviewed and approved by Attorney Mark O’Mara

Content last updated on: April 24, 2024

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Getting a Divorce in Florida

Getting a divorce can be difficult and emotional for all involved parties. You must make decisions that affect the rest of your life and, in many cases, your children’s lives. Florida law has specific laws governing various aspects of divorce, and failure to understand them can lead to serious unintended consequences. It is in your best interests to partner with an experienced Orlando divorce attorney who understands the nuances of Florida family law, knows how to handle settlement negotiations, and can protect your rights in court. Call (407) 634-6604 or reach out online to learn how our Orlando divorce attorneys can help. We offer free, confidential consultations to make sure you know your full legal rights and options at no cost to you.

How the Orlando Divorce Lawyers at O’Mara Law Group Can Help

Divorce is a complex legal process requiring spouses to contend with their differences as they try to agree on terms. If they cannot, a judge will make key decisions for them. Florida has various rules and procedures governing divorces, and any deviations can be time-consuming and costly.

Our experienced family law attorneys can provide clarity during what may be an uncertain time in your life. Our award-winning lawyers have decades of combined experience handling complex divorce cases:

We have been recognized as Super Lawyers and Top 100 Trial Lawyers for our client-focused approach and dedication to excellent service. Where possible, we embrace non-adversarial collaborative divorce strategies, such as mediation, to minimize stress and expense for all parties involved.

Our client testimonials speak for themselves and reveal our unwavering dedication to our clients. When things get tough, we will make sure your voice is heard and provide the high-quality legal advocacy you need to ensure your rights and interests are protected.

"Family law cases are incredibly stressful for our clients due to several factors. Finances undergo substantial shifts, especially in divorce cases where a single household must now support two. There are numerous decisions to be made, each with far-reaching consequences. Our focus is on reassuring them that we have their backs and that what may seem like devastation won't define their future. What I appreciate about the team approach at OLG in handling family law cases is that clients come to us from diverse starting points, and we have a diverse group of professionals who can address their specific needs within our team."

Overview of the Florida Divorce Process

  • Filing the petition for dissolution of marriage – Our attorneys can help you file paperwork with the appropriate court for your divorce. Once the other party receives a divorce petition, they have 20 days to respond.
  • Responses to the petition – If you are responding to divorce papers, our attorneys will help you do so within the specified period. They can also help you determine the best course of action. Depending on the needs of your case, we will discuss the possibility of mediation or other collaborative ways to resolve critical aspects of your dissolution. 
  • Pre-trial orders – A judge may decide that both parties must maintain the status quo while the divorce is pending, such as by maintaining their current financial and childcare duties. A judge may also issue orders regarding temporary alimony, child support, or occupation of the marital home.
  • Discovery – Divorcing spouses must go through the discovery process in which they share evidence related to their separation, such as bank statements and other financial information. State law requires them to submit various financial documents to each other and the court within 45 days. Our attorneys can help you gather, evaluate, and submit all necessary paperwork to prevent delays.
  • Mediation and litigation – You may choose to attend voluntary divorce mediation. The presiding judge may also decide on court-ordered mediation before agreeing to a trial. If necessary after mediation, your case can be litigated in court. Regardless of how your case proceeds, it is best to have a skilled Orlando divorce lawyer on your side who can protect your interests and ensure you comply with the governing law.
  • Modification or enforcement, if necessary – Parties to a divorce may decide that a modification in alimony, child support, time-sharing, or other agreements in a divorce is necessary later on. The law normally requires a significant change in circumstances to change a divorce decree. If a child is involved, the court will prioritize their best interests.

Simplified Divorce in Orlando

To proceed with a simplified dissolution of marriage, you must agree on the terms of the divorce, have no minor children from the marriage, and agree that there will be no alimony. You must also agree on the division of property and liabilities. Couples cannot seek a simplified dissolution if the wife is pregnant. 

Importantly, in a simplified divorce, you must also give up your right to trial and appeal. This kind of divorce is the quickest and least expensive to process. They are ideal for spouses who have been married for a very short period or who own little to no property together.

Uncontested Divorce in Orlando

Similarly, in an uncontested divorce, separating spouses also agree on key issues like property division. However, they do not qualify based on the criteria for a simplified divorce. These divorces are generally faster and less expensive than contested divorces, but parties still benefit from an experienced Orlando divorce attorney to help them resolve key issues and make sure their rights are protected.

Contested Divorce in Orlando

Sometimes, couples simply can’t agree on critical issues, leading to a contested divorce. It is crucial to have a lawyer represent you in a contested divorce to ensure your best interests are accounted for regarding issues like alimony, child support, child custody, and equitable division of assets and liabilities.

Common Questions About the Divorce Process in Florida

Florida has very specific laws governing various aspects of divorce. These are some of the more common questions our Orlando divorce lawyers receive from our clients.

What Are the Grounds for Divorce in Florida?

Florida is a no-fault divorce state. One party can file a petition if the marriage is “irretrievably broken.” If the other party agrees, the judge generally proceeds with the dissolution. However, if the other party contests the divorce or if there is a minor child involved, the judge could also potentially order a period of counseling to try to fix the marriage.

What Are Florida’s Residency Requirements for Divorce?

For a couple to divorce in Florida, at least one of the parties must have lived in the state for at least six months before filing a petition.

Is There a Waiting Period for Divorces in Florida?

There is a 20-day waiting period after filing for divorce. A judge may also order continuances based on whether the marriage is irretrievably broken or if a minor child is involved. Unlike many states, Florida does not recognize “legal separations.”

How Is Marital Property Divided in Florida?

Florida is an equitable division state, meaning marital property is divided in a manner deemed “fair” by the judge. This does not necessarily mean that everything will be divided 50/50. Therefore, it is even more important that spouses seek high-quality legal representation in a Florida divorce, especially if it is contested.

How Long Does It Take for an Orlando Divorce To Be Finalized?

The time it takes for a judge to finalize your divorce will depend on various factors, including the complexity of your marital assets, whether children are involved, and to what extent you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse disagree on key divorce issues. Mediated divorces may resolve within a few months. A litigated divorce could take longer. In particularly difficult cases, it may last over a year.

How Much Does a Divorce Lawyer Cost?

Your initial consultation with O’Mara Law Group is free. We will then work with you on a fee agreement that covers the time we spend on your case and the cost of filing paperwork associated with your divorce. 

A highly contested divorce could take a long time and cut into marital assets. An uncontested divorce or one resolved in mediation is generally less expensive.

No matter the circumstances, we are committed to providing high-quality legal services and guarantee transparent billing practices. We will be available throughout the life of your case to answer questions and make sure you know how things are progressing.

Our Experienced Orlando Divorce Lawyers Can Assist With All Aspects of Your Divorce

Divorce normally represents a significant life change for most couples, and working with a lawyer who will safeguard your interests is essential. Our Orlando divorce attorneys can guide you through all aspects of your divorce, drawing on their deep knowledge of Florida law and decades of experience to help you make the best decisions for yourself and your family.

Child Custody and Time-Sharing

Florida laws regarding child custody and visitation prioritize the child’s best interests. The law starts with a baseline presumption that both parents should be involved in their children’s lives. Judges then consider numerous factors in time-sharing decisions, such as which parent provides the most stable home environment, the child’s health and safety, the child’s age, and the child’s wishes.

Child Support

Florida judges determine child support based on the number of children involved, who they live with, and their parents’ incomes. If parents make equal money and have custody over their children for equal amounts of time, there may be no child support ordered. Having an experienced lawyer help you with child support issues is critical to ensure a result that protects your child’s best interests without unfairly privileging one parent over the other.


Judges may order temporary alimony while your case goes through the divorce process. As part of a divorce settlement, a judge may order three types of alimony:

  • Bridge-the-gap alimony is limited to two years and helps the spouse with fewer resources transition from married to single life.
  • Rehabilitative alimony is limited to five years and helps one spouse receive education or job training so they can become financially independent.
  • Durational alimony is ordered for a set period and is determined based on the length of the marriage.

As of 2023, Florida law no longer permits permanent alimony.

Property Division

Florida judges make property division decisions based on what is fair and equitable. They may divide marital assets and liabilities equally or decide that they all belong primarily to one party. It is important to secure high-quality legal representation to ensure you are not left with the short end of the stick.

Some assets, such as inheritances, are not considered marital property and cannot be split. Other assets may be excluded from property division based on a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement.

Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements

Parties who wish to protect some of their assets often sign prenuptial or postnuptial agreements. Among other things, these agreements may address what happens following a divorce or the death of a spouse. However, child custody arrangements are not enforceable if included in these agreements. 

A judge must also decide whether these agreements are not grossly unfair, signed under duress, or direct one spouse to do something illegal. These kinds of defects render the contract unenforceable.


If paternity is established, Florida law allows the father to seek custody and visitation and make upbringing decisions. It also entitles the mother to seek child support. If the parties don’t want to go through paternity testing, they can sign an Acknowledgement of Paternity. If your divorce involves questions about paternity, our Orlando paternity lawyers can help.

Domestic Violence

Florida law protects victims of domestic violence at various stages of their divorce. For example, a judge might refrain from ordering mediation if it would put one party in danger. Judges may also make decisions about who occupies the marital home, has time-sharing rights over children, and address other important concerns in situations involving domestic violence. Spouses who are victims of domestic violence can request a restraining order to protect them during their dissolution proceedings.


Florida has strict laws regarding the relocation of children during a divorce. Parents can petition a court for relocation. Alternatively, they can sign a written agreement that:

  1. Reflects consent to the relocation;
  2. Defines an access or time-sharing schedule for the nonrelocating parent and any other persons who are entitled to access or time-sharing; and
  3. Describes, if necessary, any transportation arrangements related to access or time-sharing.

The Team at the O'Mara Law Group Will Look Out for Your Best Interests

Every divorce is unique and presents different challenges based on the situations of the involved parties. Our team has experience handling various types of divorce and can help you no matter your circumstances. In all cases, we strive to ensure a truly equitable outcome for our clients.

Women’s Divorce

Women often face disproportionate financial challenges in the wake of a divorce. In many cases, they often also have more childcare responsibilities than their spouse. Our experienced Orlando women’s divorce attorneys can help you secure a divorce agreement that protects your full rights and interests.

Men’s Divorce

By contrast, in many situations, men are the primary breadwinners in a marriage and face protracted disputes in divorces regarding marital property, child support, and alimony. Men are entitled to the same rights as women during dissolution, and our men’s divorce attorneys in Orlando can help protect yours.

LGBT+ Divorce

Florida law only started recognizing same-sex marriages in 2015. Dissolving these marriages can be complex, especially because many same-sex couples accumulated property before their union was officially recognized. Our Orlando same-sex divorce lawyers can help you devise an equitable divorce settlement and resolve complicated child custody issues.

Military Divorce

Divorces in which one or both parties are members of the military present unique challenges. Child custody and time-sharing can be more difficult to work out in these situations, and there are additional issues regarding health care, survivor benefits, and military pensions. Our military divorce attorneys in Orlando understand these legal challenges and have extensive experience helping military families move through their divorce proceedings.

High-Asset Divorce

Dividing assets is a complex process when there are significant amounts of money, multiple homes, business interests, and other high-value assets to account for. Our Orlando high-asset divorce attorneys can help you secure an equitable division of property, navigate prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, and handle other challenges in your high-asset divorce.

Contact the O’Mara Law Group Today

We are committed to helping our clients navigate the complex laws governing the divorce process in Florida. We do everything we can to enforce our clients’ rights and protect their financial futures, all while providing compassionate support as they transition to their life after marriage. Call (407) 634-6604 or complete our online contact form to schedule your free, confidential consultation.

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