Uncontested Divorce

Uncontested Divorce

A divorce is a legal order ending a marriage. For some, divorce brings to mind a highly contentious battle between spouses. Spouses do not always contest a divorce and a divorce is not always contentious. Sometimes spouses are in agreement regarding how they are going to divorce and resolve their issues. Other times, one spouse may file and the other spouse may choose not to respond. In both of these instances, the parties have an uncontested divorce.

An uncontested divorce can be a simpler process. In many instances, it can save both spouses time and money. Uncontested does not mean spouses can ignore their issues or court requirements. Are you contemplating filing for divorce in Las Vegas? An experienced divorce lawyer can help you navigate the process during this difficult time. Contact Anthem Divorce Lawyers today for a consultation.

Who Can File for Divorce in Nevada?

To file for divorce in Nevada, one spouse must live in Nevada for at least six weeks before filing for divorce. That spouse must intend to remain in Nevada indefinitely.

What Are the Grounds for a Nevada Divorce?

Nevada is a “no fault” state. No fault means that the person asking for a divorce does not have to prove that anybody did anything wrong to cause the divorce. Pursuant to Nevada Revised Statute (NRS) 125.010, the following are valid grounds for divorce:

  1. Insanity existing for two years prior to the filing for divorce
  2. Spouses live separate and apart for one year without cohabiting
  3. Incompatibility (the parties don’t get along)

What Is an Uncontested Divorce?

An uncontested divorce is either where:

  • One party files for divorce and the other does not respond.
  • The parties are in agreement regarding all issues.

In an uncontested divorce, the parties agree regarding the following:

  • The division of property and debt
  • Spousal support/alimony and duration
  • Whether a spouse wants to return to their former name

If the parties have minor children, they have to agree regarding:

  • Child support
  • Child custody and visitation

In an uncontested divorce, one or both parties may have legal representation.

What Is the Divorce Process?

In an uncontested divorce, one party will file a complaint for divorce.  The person who files for divorce is the plaintiff and the other spouse is the defendant. The plaintiff’s complaint for divorce will list what the plaintiff would like out of the divorce. The plaintiff serves the defendant with the summons and complaint. If the plaintiff cannot locate the defendant, the plaintiff has to try to serve the defendant through other means. The defendant has 21 days to respond.

What Happens if the Defendant Does Not Respond?

If the defendant does not respond, the plaintiff can ask the court to enter a default against the defendant. If the court enters the default, the plaintiff can ask the judge for a final divorce. The plaintiff must still fill out and file a final set of documents before this can happen. The judge may or may not require a hearing. Once the plaintiff files all the necessary paperwork, the judge can enter the decree of divorce.

What Happens if the Defendant Responds?

If the defendant responds and asks for anything other than what the plaintiff requested in the complaint, the divorce is contested.

After the plaintiff files for divorce, the defendant and plaintiff can still reach an agreement. If they reach an agreement on all of the divorce issues, they can prepare a final divorce decree with their full agreement included. Both parties sign the divorce decree and submit it to the judge for approval. The judge may approve the decree with or without a hearing.

What Do the Parties Need to Decide in an Uncontested Divorce?

In an uncontested divorce the parties must resolve all of the issues that the divorce process resolves including:

  • The division of property and debt
  • Spousal support/alimony and duration
  • Whether a spouse wants to return to their former name

If the parties have minor children, they will also have to agree regarding:

  • Child support
  • Child custody and visitation

An uncontested divorce affects your legal rights. If you are contemplating divorce, you should consult with a lawyer. Anthem Divorce Lawyers serve clients all over the Las Vegas area. Contact us today for a consultation.

How Do Parties Divide Property and Debts?

Parties can decide how to divide their property and debts. Nevada is a community property state. If parties were in a contested divorce and the matter went to trial, the court would equally divide community property and debt among spouses. In a community property state, the court may allow a spouse to keep their separate property.

During a divorce, couples typically divide the following property and debt:

  • Houses
  • Mortgages
  • Household items
  • Furniture
  • Bank accounts
  • Vehicles
  • Car loans
  • Credit card debt
  • Tax debt
  • Pensions
  • Retirement accounts
  • A business owned by a spouse
  • Pets

How Is Spousal Support/Alimony Determined?

In an uncontested divorce, parties determine spousal support/alimony amount and duration. In Nevada, the court may award alimony as appears “just and equitable."  The court does not have to award alimony and neither do the parties.

If the matter were contested, the courts could award temporary maintenance for a spouse during the pendency of the divorce. The court determines whether to award alimony based on many factors. If the court awards alimony, it can specify the amount and whether the alimony is:

  • In one lump sum
  • For a set period of time
  • To assist one spouse in obtaining training or education

What if the Parties have Children?

If the parties have children, they will have to resolve child support, custody, and visitation.

How Do Parties Calculate Child Support?

Child support is calculated based on a percentage of a parent’s gross monthly income. Every child support order must include a provision specifying medical support provided for the child.

The State of Nevada provides an online Nevada Child Support Guidelines Calculator. A parent can use the calculator to estimate child support obligations under the new law effective February 1, 2020.

Can Parents Agree to a Different Child Support Amount?

Parents may agree to a child support amount other than one calculated based on the Nevada child support guidelines. The stipulation must be in writing and meet certain requirements. We understand that child support calculations can be confusing. Let the experts at Anthem Divorce Lawyers discuss your options with you. Contact us today for a consultation.

How Is Custody and Visitation Decided?

Parents are allowed to agree to their own custody and visitation schedules. If the matter is uncontested, parents need to agree to both legal and physical custody.

  • Legal custody refers to who makes major decisions about the child including healthcare, religion, and education.
  • Physical custody is the amount of time a child spends with each parent.

An uncontested divorce can save time and alleviate stress. It is still a legal process that must meet certain requirements. An experienced lawyer can help you navigate the uncontested divorce process.

Las Vegas Divorce Lawyers

An experienced divorce lawyer can help you understand your rights and advocate your position. Anthem Divorce Lawyers have over 25 years of experience. Our office is Henderson, Nevada and we serve clients all over the Las Vegas area. Contact us today for a consultation.