The divorce trial is sometimes necessary in Tulsa, OK, because not all divorces are amicable.
When couples cannot agree or when there are contested issues in a divorce, these contested issues must be settled by the court. Some of these matters may be able to be resolved in hearings before the court. However, some of these issues will have to be resolved at a divorce trial.
Divorce Trial Procedure
When a spouse files a response to a divorce petition that contests issues and the court is unable to move the parties to resolution of these issues, those issues will be resolved in a trial.
Before the trial, a court hearing will take place in which the court will identify all the issues for resolution at the trial and decide on the format of the trial. The judge will also determine evidentiary matters, such as what evidence will be admissible and what evidence will be inadmissible at trial. This is often done in pretrial motions before the court.
If your divorce is headed for trial, you can expect that your attorney will spend time to prepare for it. Trial briefs outlining the issues and evidence will need to be prepared. Witnesses will need to be subpoenaed and questioned at trial. Documentary evidence regarding the issues will need to be prepared and admitted for the court’s consideration.
A trial can last several days. At the end of the trial, the court will decide on the outstanding issues and the matter can move toward a final decree of divorce.
Typical contested issues can include child custody, support issues, and matters pertaining to property division. These can be particularly tricky when one or both of the spouses own a business.
This whole process can take months to resolve. In comparison, an uncontested divorce with no children in Oklahoma can take as little as 10 days to complete.
Contested divorces that go to trial are always expensive for the parties involved. It is imperative that you have an experienced Tulsa divorce attorney represent you in a divorce case that is likely to go to trial — not only at the trial itself but also during the discovery phase.
Discovery is the phase of litigation that allows each side to use certain tools to discover facts, evidence, and arguments that the opposing side is relying on in their position. Discovery can include written answers to written questions, the production of documents and other evidence and other tools. Depending on the complexity of the issues, discovery can take months to complete.
Costs vary quite a bit depending on the number and complexity of the matters involved, but it is likely that a trial will cost thousands of dollars to resolve.
Sometimes, however, a contested divorce is unavoidable. If you or a loved one is considering a divorce and has questions regarding the process, it is important that you bring your questions to an experienced family law attorney as soon as possible. The decisions you make today may affect you for years to come.
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