GENERAL INFORMATION ABOUT DIVORCE
What do you have to prove to get a divorce?
Kentucky has “no fault” divorce, which means you don’t have to prove either spouse did anything wrong to get a divorce. (A divorce is sometimes called “dissolution of marriage”; both mean the same thing). The spouse who wants a divorce just has to tell the court that the marriage is “irretrievably broken” to get a divorce. There is really nothing the other spouse can do to stop a divorce.
Do the husband and wife both have to live in Kentucky to get a divorce here?
Either you or your spouse must be a resident of Kentucky for six months, or 180 days, before you file for divorce, and be a resident of the county in which you are filing before you can file for divorce.
How long do the husband and wife have to be separated before they can get a divorce?
You may file for divorce at any time, but you and your spouse must be separated for at least 60 days before the final divorce decree can be entered.
How much does it cost to get a divorce?
The court will charge a filing fee of $113. You usually have to pay this fee in cash or by certified check or money order. You should check with your local court clerk’s office to find out your county’s exact fee. If you cannot pay the fee for the divorce, you can ask the court to waive the cost. This motion, generally called an IFP motion, can be requested at your county clerk’s office. If the judge decides that you qualify, then you do not have to pay for your divorce. If you have children of the marriage, you may have to attend a class called Families in Transition for helping children through a divorce. There is sometimes a fee for this class. However, this fee is usually based on a sliding scale. Lack of finances is not an excuse for not attending the class.
If you hire an attorney, you will also have to pay the attorney. You will need to check with the attorney about that attorney’s fees.
How long does it take to get a divorce?
The length of time it takes for a divorce depends on your individual circumstances. Generally, in Kentucky, couples with children of the marriage have to wait at least 60 days and attend Families in Transition. before they can file their final papers. The court can issue temporary orders as soon as the divorce is filed, but the actual divorce and final orders cannot be done until 60 days have passed since the date the divorce was filed. It could take longer than 60 days, depending on the issues of your case and the court’s schedule. For couples without children of the marriage, a divorce can actually be finalized sooner, but this timing still depends largely on the issues in your divorce, such as whether your spouse will sign an agreement, whether you have significant assets, etc.
What happens after I file the divorce papers?
Your divorce case is assigned to a judge, and the judge will review any initial motions that you have filed, such as a motion to proceed without paying court costs. If you asked for temporary custody, child support, etc., the Court will have a “provisional” or “preliminary” hearing. At this hearing, the Court can enter restraining orders and other temporary orders such as custody, visitation, support, and property. The provisional order will be in effect only until the final hearing. The court can make different decisions at the final hearing.
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