Understanding Stipulated Divorce Laws In Nevada
Want to move forward with the divorce as soon as possible?
Two specific options are available to those filing for divorce – uncontested and contested divorce. With the uncontested divorce, both parties agree to the process and set up terms beforehand as a legally binding agreement (once approved). On the other hand, a contested divorce does the opposite and leaves everything to the judge.
To proceed with a contested divorce, you must file and serve the divorce papers to your spouse. If your spouse files a response through legal means within three weeks of being served the papers, the court proceedings will be scheduled, and the judge will decide.
In an uncontested divorce, the parties put a joint agreement before the judge. This is faster, simpler, and ideal when handling child support (NRS 125C.0675), legal custody, alimony, or splitting marital assets (NRS 125.150). This only moves forward when both parties agree on the features of the agreement and sign it.
Due to the nature of an uncontested divorce, it moves along briskly because there’s nothing to argue about. Both parties have already agreed upon the crucial details beforehand, which can save a lot of money in legal fees and reduce conflict.
What is a Stipulated Divorce?
Remember, it’s time to look at Nevada’s third type of divorce. It is called a stipulated divorce.
This type of divorce is invoked when one spouse refuses to sign a legal agreement to finalize the divorce. It is when a stipulated divorce has to be used by legal professionals. That can even happen if both spouses agree to an uncontested divorce, but one refuses to sign anything. The idea is to legally bind the other spouse into signing the papers and moving forward with the divorce.
That only happens when one spouse is willing to get a divorce, and the other isn’t. It can involve still loving the spouse or being content with the arrangements even if it makes the other person unhappy. There can also be religious reasons behind not wanting to finalize the divorce. Regardless, it often leads to not signing on the dotted line. Since no one can forcefully stop the divorce, nor can they forcefully make someone sign, it leaves the entire situation in limbo, with one party dragging things out.
For an uncontested divorce, both parties must sign the agreement. That is why it’s essential to understand what happens if one party refuses to do so.
If the spouse isn’t going to sign it, drawing up an uncontested divorce agreement doesn’t make sense, and it won’t work. The agreement has a deadline, which means a response is optional, and the spouse won’t sign it. On the other hand, a contested divorce forces the other person’s hand because they need to respond within three weeks legally, or they will get into legal trouble. It also means that the spouse who refuses to sign will not receive anything regarding the assets or anything else that would come up during a contested divorce.
To push things alone, our law firm will often add a settlement letter into the mix. That stipulates what the divorce terms are. It gives the spouse a chance to make a choice. Do they want to hire a legal professional and pay thousands in fees? Would they instead start going through the terms and save some money? It gives them a real option.
The settlement papers are an excellent way to drive home the point and make them take action. It allows us to set the standards and terms before pushing for a divorce. Yes, they can fight, but they can also decide to negotiate the terms once they are in front of them on paper.
The spouse will often settle and move forward with the divorce. Sometimes, everything is okay, and the spouse immediately approves the settlement. That will vary, but we will proceed with the stipulated divorce and get both spouses to sign. Once signed, we submit it to the court as required in Nevada.
In the end, a stipulated divorce’s sole purpose is to ensure both parties are on the same page and move towards a cost-efficient, smooth divorce. It allows both to work through the terms, sign the agreement, and have it filed in court promptly.
Legal Acceptance of a Stipulated Divorce
For a stipulated divorce agreement to go through, it has to be accepted by the court, and this means getting a judge to agree to the listed details and “bind” the agreement. Most stipulated divorce agreements pass through this phase based on legal precedents. However, the rules stipulate that an agreement is eligible for approval if it complies with Nevada’s established legal standards.
For the agreement to be viable, it must clearly and fairly divide relevant assets/debts. It also includes mentioning children and the associated expenses/decisions such as visitation, child support, or legal custody. After both parties agree on the stipulated agreement, it must be signed and filed.
There are also additional standards that apply for a divorce to go through.
* The agreement splits the property per Nevada law and treats both parties fairly.
* The agreement helps resolve all pertinent issues involving visitation, custody, and child support in line with Nevada law.
* Both parties agree to waive the legal right to alimony or create a separate alimony agreement beforehand.
* Both parties agree to waive the legal right to appeal or contest the decision later.
* Both parties accept the decision once it’s approved.
The reason for moving forward with a stipulated divorce can vary, but it comes down to simplicity. It streamlines the process and makes it less costly than a contested divorce. With a contested divorce, you can end up paying a large sum in legal fees, and those costs do add up. Plus, you will waste significant time (months) to resolve the situation. In comparison, in many cases, a stipulated divorce can take less than a month. Along with saving time, a stipulated divorce also helps save money.
What Are the Procedures for Obtaining a Stipulated Divorce?
- File petition and summons for divorce.
- Prepare a statement of financial disclosure.
- Attend the hearing for temporary orders if necessary.
- In the event of a dispute over placement and custody, mediation would take place.
- Gather the required proof of debts and assets (financial information).
- Negotiate a divorce settlement agreement.
- Attend the final divorce hearing.
- Please be aware that each case differs, and steps may be added or removed.
Divorce can frequently turn into a challenging and drawn-out process. When the divorcing spouses cannot agree on essential matters, contested divorces occur. Divorces of this type are rather typical. Occasionally, both sides can reach an agreement on most of the issues. They could agree to have a stipulated divorce in these situations. Although there are some legal requirements to carry out a stipulated divorce, it is comparable to an uncontested divorce option provided in other states. Here, we give an overview of stipulated divorces and the conditions that must be met for them to be finalized.
A stated agreement must, first and foremost, be voluntary and fully understood by both parties before being signed. The agreement must cover everything related to the divorce; nothing can be omitted. Temporary orders can be requested between the official submission and the divorce decree. That may also be included in the requirement. These interim orders established both parties’ rights while they awaited the divorce decree.
The process for filing for divorce will not change, even if the parties agree to its terms: a State circuit court will still need to be used. Additionally, the parties may forego the procedures for service of process because they contributed to the joint petition’s formulation and signing.
A stipulated divorce is more likely to go through without issues and be accepted by the court in any circumstance with the assistance of an experienced attorney. They can support the parties in the mediation process to help them reach an agreement on the terms of the stipulation. Additionally, they can help with the agreement’s formulation. You’ll discover that a divorce lawyer lifts much of the stress of divorce. As a result, the process becomes considerably simpler, freeing you up to concentrate on what matters—taking care of your kids or yourself.
What Is A Divorce Settlement Agreement?
A Divorce Settlement Agreement lays down the agreements reached by the parties in any divorce process. The dissolution form has this Divorce Settlement Agreement attached to it.
The Divorce Settlement Agreement, for instance, will include decisions about property division, spousal support, child support, visitation, custody, and any other agreements between the parties in a divorce case involving children.
The Divorce Settlement Agreement becomes the case’s judgment once it is written, approved by the parties, and filed with a court stamp. The family court and law enforcement may enforce the orders included in the decision.
The parties’ and attorneys’ negotiations outside of court may have led to the terms ending in a divorce settlement agreement. Having the terms of the judgment read aloud in court with a court reporter present or attending the settlement conference and signing a written agreement could also have the same effect (i.e., reading the agreement as part of the record). The final wording of the Divorce Settlement Agreement is drafted and negotiated by the parties’ attorneys after the provisions have been written down, signed, or entered into the record.
What Is A Stipulated Judgment?
It includes agreements between spouses about the previously covered issues; a stipulated judgment and a divorce settlement agreement are similar. Stipulated judgments are typically more condensed and concise versions of divorce settlement agreements. Negotiating terms and putting them into a stipulated decision is how many contentious cases are settled. The provisions within a stipulated judgment have the same impact as those in a separation or paternity agreement, meaning they are subject to civil and criminal consequences once attached and integrated.
What Is Included Under The Stipulated Judgment Or Divorce Settlement Agreement?
The terms of a given stipulated decision or DSA differ case-by-case and depend on the problems raised by the case. For instance, the “property division” provisions of the agreement become extremely basic if the parties to the divorce do not jointly possess any property. Should the parties have children together, there must be comprehensive provisions regarding child support and custody, including a thorough parenting plan.
If the parties agree on spousal support, particular terms outlining each party’s responsibilities should be included.
A contract may contain clauses on future obligations for both parties, tax filings, penalties, a general release of liability, holding harmless clauses, which party owns which vehicle, child college expenditures, and other matters.
We have seen incredibly complex agreements approaching one hundred pages and divorce settlement agreements only a few pages long.
Benefits of a Stipulated Divorce
A stipulated divorce, often called an uncontested divorce, can offer several significant benefits for couples ending their marriage amicably.
Here are some of the advantages of opting for a stipulated divorce:
- Cost-Effective: Stipulated divorces are usually less expensive than contested ones involving lengthy court battles and legal disputes. Since both spouses agree on the terms, there is no need for costly litigation.
- Quicker Resolution: Stipulated divorces are often resolved more quickly than contested divorces. You can move on with your life sooner with less emotional and financial strain.
- Reduced Stress: The collaborative nature of stipulated divorces can significantly reduce the emotional and psychological stress associated with the divorce process. It allows both parties to keep a more amicable relationship, which is especially important if you have children.
- Privacy: Stipulated divorces typically keep personal matters out of the public eye. Unlike contested divorces, where court proceedings and documents are often a matter of public record, stipulated divorces are generally more discreet.
Remember that a stipulated divorce is only suitable when both parties are willing to cooperate and can come to a consensus on the divorce terms. If you’re in a situation with significant conflict, legal disputes, or issues that can’t be resolved through negotiation, a contested divorce may be necessary.
It’s essential to consult with an attorney to determine the most appropriate path for your specific circumstances. An attorney may give you advice on what would be the best course of action in your case.
Donn W. Prokopius, Chtd.
3407 W Charleston Blvd Las Vegas, NV 89102