First you file a complaint for divorce and then the opposite party has 35 days to answer or to file an appearance. Frequently, they file a counter claim also alleging a cause of action for divorce. You then file a response to that cause of action or an answer to the counterclaim. Next, we conduct discovery and have case management conferences with the court, which lead us to an early settlement panel where two attorneys volunteer their time within that county to try to propose a resolution of your matter. If your case is not resolved, you attend economic mediation. If your case doesn’t settle, you then go to an intensive settlement conference, at the end of which, if you still haven’t settled, your case will be marked to trial. The divorce process takes approximately one year to two years in the event that your case doesn’t settle. However, if your case does settle, you simply contact the court and you can be divorced very quickly.
Alison C. Leslie, Esq. practices family law exclusively in her Morristown, NJ offices, where she offers her clients the individualized attention of a solo practitioner with the experience of a larger firm.