The Law Offices of
Edward S. Cooper, Esq.

What Is an “Uncontested Divorce”?

Union County NJ Divorce AttorneyWhen people think of divorce, they may not realize that there are actually two different types of divorce that can be filed for, and also a number of different ways those divorces can ultimately be finalized. To learn more about the two possible types of divorce, no-fault divorce and fault-based divorce, please view our page on the topic here.

The focus of today’s article, rather, is to discuss how divorces can be resolved, specifically “uncontested divorce” and “contested divorce”. If you are considering a divorce, or are going through a divorce currently, it is important to understand these two ways your Union County divorce will ultimately be finalized, and what each type of divorce entails.

Uncontested Divorce Attorney Elizabeth, NJ

The term “uncontested divorce” refers, somewhat obviously, to when a divorce is filed for, and the defendant (the party receiving the divorce complaint), does not choose to contest the divorce. Specifically, this means that they are choosing not to contest the terms of their divorce settlement agreement that are submitted as part of the divorce complaint by the party actually filing for the divorce.

An uncontested divorce can happen for several reasons, including when:

  • The divorcing couple has already undergone divorce mediation, and the submitted divorce settlement agreement was already reached and agreed-to through the mediation process.
  • The divorcing couple has already negotiated their divorce settlement agreement through some other method besides mediation
  • The defendant is not truly aware of what they should do when receiving the divorce complaint, simply doesn’t care, or has left the country and is not able to be contacted by any means

The main advantage to an uncontested divorce is that, when a divorce is considered uncontested (i.e. the defendant does not respond to the divorce complaint within 35 days of its receipt), the divorce is placed on an expedited legal track, and upon a formal court hearing and judge review, is typically granted within a short time period after the divorce is initially filed for.

If you and your spouse wish to pursue an uncontested divorce, speak with an experienced Elizabeth, NJ divorce attorney regarding how you may be able to negotiate your divorce settlement agreement before the divorce is actually filed for.

On the other hand, if you have received a divorce complaint from your spouse, it is critical that you speak with an Elizabeth divorce attorney regarding how to respond to this complaint within the 35 day time period, as whatever divorce settlement agreement your spouse is currently proposing is almost certainly not in your best interests, and likely will not represent whatever unique needs or concerns you may have regarding how your divorce should be settled.

Contested Divorce Lawyer Westfield, NJ

On the other hand, a “contested divorce” simply means that the defedant has chosen to respond to the initial divorce complaint, and negotiations will now need to take place regarding the couple’s final divorce settlement agreement.

It is important to remember that, despite the name, a contested divorce does not actually have to be “contentious”. There are a number of ways for any couple to settle their divorce without stressful trial litigation, and even though it sometimes may be necessary, any person who has received a divorce complaint should almost never not respond to the complaint, especially if they are just trying to avoid a contentious or difficult divorce process.

Contact A Union County Divorce Attorney Today

At The Law Office of Edward S. Cooper, we have extensive experience helping clients to resolve their divorce in a fair manner while still taking into account their unique situation, needs, and concerns in towns across Union County including Elizabeth, Westfield, Scotch Plain, Union, and Linden.

Whether you are interested in pursuing an uncontested divorce, need legal guidance when it comes to actually filing for a divorce, or wish to better understand your options and best next steps in the case that your spouse has filed a divorce complaint, Attorney Edward Cooper is prepared to provide you with the knowledgeable, effective, and attentive legal counsel that you need and deserve in such complex, and extremely important, situations.

To speak with our firm and Edward Cooper today in a free and confidential consultation regarding your divorce, your legal options moving foward, and how we can specifically help you, please contact us online, or through our Linden, NJ office at (908) 481-4625.

The Law Offices of Edward S. Cooper, Esq.

Contact attorney Ed Cooper and find a dynamic, interactive relationship with a highly knowledgeable legal counselor.

We're devoted to serving clients in our local community, including our neighbors in Rahway, Clark, Roselle, Roselle Park, Garwood, Elizabeth, Cranford, Edison, and throughout Union County, Essex County, and northern Middlesex County.


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812 North Wood Avenue, Suite 303

Linden, NJ 07036