Dear Sam38,

Greetings. A contested divorce can mean different things to different people. When I say “contested divorce” it means that at the divorce hearing one of the parties is contesting the date of separation and therefore contesting whether or not it is proper for the court to grant the divorce.

Another version is one you often see in newspaper advertisements that read “uncontested divorce for $____.” In those cases, the words uncontested divorce mean a simple divorce filing without the issues of alimony, equitable distribution, child support, child custody, etc.

In court, at a divorce hearing, you testify about the date of marriage, date of separation, etc. All the same stuff you put in your divorce complaint.

Read this please…the court does not do a property distribution if you do not file for equitable distribution. If you do not file for equitable distribution before you get a divorce, YOU LOSE THE RIGHT TO HAVE AN EQUITABLE DISTRIBUTION OF YOUR PROPERTY. In otherwords, the court would no longer be able to divide your property for you or your spouse after the date of separation. SEE AN ATTORNEY. Best of luck.

Janet L. Fritts
Attorney at Law
4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 200
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607

The response posted above is based upon the limited factual information made available and is not intended as a full and complete response to the question. The only reliable manner to obtain complete and adequate legal advice is to consult with an attorney, fully explain your situation, and allow the attorney sufficient opportunity to research the applicable law and facts required to render an accurate opinion. The basic information provided above is intended as a public service but a full discussion with an attorney should be undertaken before taking any action.

What is a contested divorce? What happens in court? What does the spouse who applied for divorce do now? Does the court go ahead with property dist, or does everything stop for another 30 days? Thank you.