How long does it take a divorce to become final if one party is refusing the divorce?

How long does it take a divorce to become final if one party is refusing the divorce?

It can take an amazingly, shockingly long time.

One of the most frustrating things about this experience is that while you clearly have a stake in the expeditious outcome of your divorce action, you are not the only participant in the divorce process, and if the other participants do not share your desire to dispose of your divorce case as promptly as reasonably possible, you can often find the divorce process frustratingly tedious.

I’ve been involved in cases that have, despite my and my clients’ best efforts, dragged out for years beyond when they should have been set for trial.

Here are a few things that you can do to ensure that you are not contributing to the delays in your case:

  • Don’t keep hoping for a perfectly fair settlement;
    • I completely understand the desire to settle the case so that you avoid months or years of protracted litigation and or having to spend scary amounts of money preparing for and going to trial. but once you’ve gone to mediation once or twice, once you’ve exchanged multiple settlement proposals, and have nothing to show for it, then it should be clear that unless you roll over and settle on the terms your spouse dictates, your case will be going to trial. When she reached that realization there’s no point in putting it off any longer.
    • Sometimes it may be your attorney, not you, who is afraid to stop negotiating in a fruitless attempt to reach a settlement. Some lawyers are terrified of going to trial, so they might be the ones slowing the case down in a vain attempt to settle the case so that they don’t have to worry about preparing for and going to trial.
  • Bite the bullet and realize that preparing for and going to trial is expensive. For some people, the financial cost of preparing for and going to trial is more than they can pay. Some people literally cannot afford to go to trial. If you find yourself in that situation, and then make a settlement you know isn’t fair but one that you made because you had no other alternative, that’s a hard pill to swallow, but there’s little point in complaining about it; you did the best you could.
  • Make sure you have an attorney who doesn’t put up with the opposing parties and/or the opposing party’s attorney’s or even the court’s dilatory shenanigans. Your attorney cannot force your case to settle on your terms and timetable but can take steps to ensure that the opposing side and/or the court isn’t/aren’t delaying the progress of the case inexcusably. If your attorney is in this kind of attorney, fire him or her and get one who is.

Utah Family Law, LC | | 801-466-9277

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