How Long Does It Take to Get a Nevada Divorce?
When a spouse considers ending a marriage, one of the first questions often is how long it takes to get a Nevada divorce. The answer depends on the circumstances of the married couple. Getting a Nevada divorce requires a judicial proceeding, and the length of time required to complete the legal proceeding varies based on the situation of the spouses.
Nevada Divorce Process
To be eligible to get a Nevada divorce, one of the spouses must reside in the state for at least six weeks before the divorce complaint is filed. The resident spouse also must intend to remain in the state after the divorce is filed and granted. If the divorce involves issues of child custody and support, the child must reside in the state for at least six months for the court to have jurisdiction over those issues. So, if the resident spouse or child only recently moved to Nevada, the spouses may need to wait to file for divorce until the applicable residency requirements are satisfied.
In addition, the time it takes to get a Nevada divorce depends significantly on whether the legal proceeding is contested or uncontested. Resolution of a contested divorce takes longer than an uncontested divorce. A contested divorce can even take months or years to resolve, depending on how complex the issues are.
A contested divorce occurs when the spouses disagree about property division, child custody and support, and alimony (spousal support). A Nevada judge cannot issue a divorce decree until those issues are resolved, either by the couple in an agreement or by the court after a hearing. In contrast, an uncontested divorce is one where there is no disagreement between the spouses on any of the issues that the court must address in the divorce. An uncontested divorce generally takes much less time than a contested divorce. If the parties are in complete agreement on all issues, they can file a Joint Petition for Divorce, which expedites the process.
A Joint Petition for Divorce generally takes the least amount of time of any Nevada divorce proceeding. Depending on the court’s schedule, the divorce may be finalized in a matter of weeks. However, spouses considering a Joint Petition should each talk with a knowledgeable divorce lawyer to make absolutely certain that an uncontested divorce is the right decision for each of them. Pursuing a Joint Petition does carry some risks. For more information about a Joint Petition for Divorce, please read our article, When Can You Get an Uncontested Divorce in Las Vegas?
Aside from property, custody, and support disagreements, other circumstances of the spouses may also delay the ability to finalize a divorce. For example: If one spouse files a divorce complaint, the other spouse must be notified by accomplishing service of the complaint and a summons on the other spouse. How the process service is conducted affects the amount of time required to get the divorce.
How to Expedite a Nevada Divorce
If you are getting a divorce in Nevada and want to proceed as quickly as possible, you should make certain that your wish for a quick process does not lead you to give up important rights or make decisions that you will regret in the future. The best way to accomplish that goal is to talk with an experienced Nevada divorce lawyer.
Getting an attorney to assist with your divorce proceeding has significant benefits. In addition to making sure you don’t make any abrupt decisions that adversely affect your interests and rights, your lawyer evaluates your circumstances and your marital situation to determine the best options that are available, taking everything into account.
It's important to keep in mind that your lawyer only represents you. The goal is to protect your interests and rights, now and in the future. An attorney cannot represent or provide advice to both spouses in a divorce proceeding. Your spouse must consult with their own attorney if they wish to obtain legal advice or representation.
If there are areas of disagreement between you and your spouse in the areas of property, custody, or support, your attorney will explore options for resolving those issues in a manner acceptable to both parties. If your spouse has a lawyer, your lawyer and your spouse’s attorney conduct negotiations, in an effort to reach agreement on all matters and arrive at a settlement agreement that the court can approve as part of the final order in the divorce.
Having legal representation in a divorce proceeding does more than protect your rights and interests. It also prevents you from making mistakes in legal procedures or processes, which could cause delays and increase the amount of time it takes you and your spouse to finalize the divorce. In other words, the best way to get a Nevada divorce in the shortest amount of time is to count on a knowledgeable attorney to help you navigate through the process.
Schedule a Free Consultation With an Experienced Las Vegas Divorce Attorney
If you are considering filing for divorce in Nevada, Las Vegas family law attorney Joseph Gersten is here to help. He draws on his extensive experience in domestic matters, including child custody and support, property division, and alimony (spousal support), to protect your interests and pursue an efficient, cost-effective resolution of all issues.
The Gersten Law Firm assists clients in Las Vegas, Henderson, and elsewhere in Clark County. Your initial consultation is always free-of-charge. Call 702.857.8777 or complete the online contact form to schedule an appointment.