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Portland Divorce Attorneys
Helping You Through the Divorce Process
Divorce is a difficult process, and it can be made even more difficult when you don’t have the right legal representation. At Zerillo Law Firm, we understand the complexities of divorce and are here to help you through it. Our Portland divorce lawyers have the experience and knowledge to help you navigate the process and ensure that your rights are protected.
What Is Divorce?
Divorce is the legal process of ending a marriage. It is also known as “dissolution of marriage.”
Divorce laws vary from state to state, but all states have some form of no-fault divorce. In a no-fault divorce, neither spouse is required to prove that the other spouse did something wrong. Instead, the spouses must simply state that they are no longer compatible and that the marriage is irretrievably broken.
There are two types of divorce:
- Contested divorce: In a contested divorce, the spouses cannot agree on how to resolve their issues, such as property division, child custody, and alimony. The court will then decide these issues for them.
- Uncontested divorce: In an uncontested divorce, the spouses agree on how to resolve their issues and can submit a written agreement to the court. The court will then review the agreement and, if it is fair, approve it.
How to File for Divorce in Maine
In Maine, you can file for divorce if you or your spouse has lived in the state for at least six months. You can file for divorce in the county where you live or in the county where your spouse lives.
To file for divorce, you must take the following steps:
- Complete the necessary forms: You must complete a Complaint for Divorce and a Summons. You must also complete a Certificate of Divorce and a Family Matter Summary Sheet. If you have children, you must also complete a Child Support Affidavit and a Child Care Expense Verification.
- File the forms with the court: You must file the forms with the court and pay a filing fee. If you cannot afford the fee, you can ask the court to waive it.
- Serve your spouse: You must serve your spouse with a copy of the forms. You can do this by having a sheriff or a professional process server deliver the forms to your spouse. You can also ask your spouse to sign an Acceptance of Service form.
- Wait for your spouse to respond: Your spouse has 21 days to respond to the divorce papers. If your spouse does not respond, you can ask the court to grant you a default judgment.
- Attend a hearing: If your spouse responds to the divorce papers, you will need to attend a hearing. At the hearing, the judge will ask you questions about your marriage and your divorce agreement. If the judge approves your agreement, he or she will sign a Decree of Divorce.
How Long Does a Divorce Take in Maine?
In Maine, the divorce process typically takes at least 60 days. However, the process can take longer if the spouses cannot agree on how to resolve their issues.
If the spouses cannot agree on how to resolve their issues, the court will schedule a final hearing. The final hearing is typically scheduled within 90 days of the date that the divorce was filed. However, the hearing can be scheduled sooner if there is an emergency, such as domestic violence.
After the final hearing, the court will issue a final divorce decree. The divorce is not final until the decree is issued.
What Are the Grounds for Divorce in Maine?
In Maine, you can file for divorce on the grounds of irreconcilable marital differences. This is a no-fault ground, which means that you do not have to prove that your spouse did something wrong.
You can also file for divorce on the grounds of:
- Extreme cruelty
- Desertion for three consecutive years
- Drug or alcohol addiction
It is generally easier to file for divorce on the grounds of irreconcilable marital differences than it is to file for divorce on the grounds of fault. This is because you do not have to prove that your spouse did something wrong.
What Is the Difference Between a Legal Separation and a Divorce?
A legal separation is a court order that allows a married couple to live apart. The couple is still legally married, but they are not required to live together.
There are several reasons why a couple may choose to get a legal separation instead of a divorce. For example, a couple may choose to get a legal separation if they:
- Do not want to get a divorce for religious reasons
- Do not want to get a divorce for financial reasons
- Do not want to get a divorce for personal reasons
- Do not meet the residency requirements for a divorce
There are also several reasons why a couple may choose to get a divorce instead of a legal separation. For example, a couple may choose to get a divorce if they:
- Want to get remarried
- Want to change their name
- Want to end their financial relationship
- Want to end their property relationship
- Want to end their inheritance rights
There are several ways to get a legal separation in Maine. For example, you can get a legal separation by:
- Signing a separation agreement
- Filing a complaint for legal separation
- Filing a complaint for support
- Filing a complaint for custody
If you and your spouse have children, you will need to have a parenting plan in place before you can get a legal separation. A parenting plan is a written agreement that outlines how you and your spouse will share parenting time and responsibilities.
If you and your spouse have a separation agreement, you can ask the court to convert the agreement into a divorce agreement. If the court approves the agreement, it will issue a final divorce decree.
Zerillo Law Firm stands up for the underdog. We will not tolerate bullies, and in this day and age some of the biggest bullies are corporations, insurance companies, and even our own government. It is important to us that we always do what’s right and fight serious charges on behalf of our clients. Our clients trust us to do what’s right and we don’t take that trust lightly. We will tell your side of the story and will not back down until we win on your behalf. Our lawyer is confident, passionate, and holds himself to a higher standard. Watch our video to learn more about our practice.
Felony Reckless Conduct Case Dismissed
Manslaughter Case Dismissed
Assault on an Officer Case Dismissed
Murder 70 Year Sentence Vacated
Drug and Assault Case Not Guilty
Felony Marijuana Trafficking Case Dismissed
Heroin, Fentanyl & Cocaine Trafficking Felonies Felonies Dismissed
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Assault Case Dismissed
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