What Happens When You Have a Contested Divorce?


If at all possible, a contested divorce in Pasadena is something you want to avoid.

To end their marriage, a couple has to agree to the terms of their divorce. A contested divorce is a divorce in which one or more of the following issues are being debated:

  • Division of marital assets
  • Division of marital debts
  • Payment of spousal support
  • Payment of child support
  • Child custody
  • Visitation

A contested divorce is different from a divorce in which only one spouse wants to end the marriage. You are not allowed to contest the divorce based on the grounds that you'd simply prefer to stay married to your spouse.

When a couple is in the middle of a contested divorce, the judge will issue temporary orders to make sure that important business is still taken care of. For example, temporary orders will set the parameters for child custody and child support until the divorce is finalized.

Generally speaking, the state does not like to get involved in a couple's private affairs. The judge wants to avoid having to decide the terms of a couple's divorce if at all possible. The judge might order a couple to attend mediation sessions to help facilitate a resolution. Custody counseling might also be required if there is reason to believe the couple's conflict is negatively effecting the children.

At the final hearing in a contested divorce, the judge will hear evidence and testimony from both sides. Then he or she will either make a ruling from the bench or take the matter under advisement and make a ruling at a later date.

Once the ruling has been made, both sides have an opportunity to appeal. However, appeals can be expensive and time consuming. If the ruling is not in your favor, you'll need to discuss the issue with your attorney to determine if appealing is truly in your best interests.

How Can We Help?

If you have questions about the divorce process, please call our office at (626) 683-8113 or email us at info@PasadenaLawOffice.com. Our divorce lawyers in Pasadena are equipped to handle a variety of legal issues, including concerns relating to alimony, child custody, child support, and the division of marital assets.