It’s perfectly understandable if the mere thought of going to divorce court is something that terrifies you. You’re certainly not the only one who has felt like that. One reason why it feels so frightening and stressful is because you have so much at stake. Several critical elements of your life and your children’s lives are about to be decided.
To help make the process go as smoothly as possible, you are going to need to learn what to expect during a divorce court hearing.
What Happens In Divorce Court?
First and foremost, you need to know what your divorce court hearing is likely to cover. Some of these topics include, but are not limited to:
- Child Custody and Support
- Divorce Attorney Fees
- Spousal Support
- Issues Regarding Assets
- Protective Orders
- Temporary Restraining Orders (if applicable)
- Any other issues that are necessary for the trial to move forward
The actual manner in which the divorce hearing is conducted will be almost entirely dependent on where you live. This is because each state’s court system will operate somewhat differently. Some courts will also use judges, while others will only use hearing officers.
That being said, you can expect virtually every divorce court hearing to proceed in the same basic way. The clerk will call your case, at which point you, your lawyer, your spouse, and the lawyer of your spouse will step up to the judge’s bench.
The majority of the talking during the hearing will be done by your lawyer and your spouse’s lawyer. Depending on the circumstances of the case, you may or may not have to testify yourself. If you are called to testify, then you will need to swear that you will tell the truth. This is always required for anyone who testifies.
The only time that you will have to argue your case yourself is if you don’t have a lawyer. This is not recommended because a lawyer will know the ins and outs of a court room. They will know your case and will know how to stand up for the things you want and need out of your situation.
Once the case is concluded, the judge will issue a ruling on the issues that have been presented. This ruling will remain in place until the divorce is complete.
P.S. If you need additional help preparing for your divorce, we have created a FREE Divorce Financial Documents Checklist. Grab your copy by clicking the picture below.