When the decision to divorce is finally made, there are questions as to how to quickly and effectively navigate legal proceedings for a smooth outcome for both parties and any children from the marriage.  Divorce can be a very stressful period in a person’s life and it is helpful to consult with legal counsel to give you a brief overview of what actions and documents will be necessary as you move along with the legal process.


Naples divorce petitions are filed in the Twentieth Judicial Circuit Court in a State of Florida “no fault” action where it is only necessary for one party to say the marriage is “irretrievably broken” without placing blame.  At least one party to the action must be a resident of Florida for six months prior to divorce, and file the paperwork in the county of residency.

Financial matters include:

  • Alimony – financial support to a divorced party from their former spouse, usually the main financial provider of the marriage, made under order of the court.
  • Child Support – financial support based on each parties’ income; child care and insurance costs for the dependents, and how many overnights each parent spends with the child.  Child Support Guidelines Worksheets must be completed by both parties and attached to final agreement.
  • Distribution of Marital Assets/Liabilities – distributing the assets and liabilities between the parties to the divorce as directed by the court.
  • Emergency Support – financial support sought after for a separated party before the divorce can be finalized and spousal/child support mandated by the court in the divorce action.

Family matters include:

Child Custody – custody that is in the best interests of the child taking into consideration a multitude of factors such as:

  • Child preference if 13 years.
  • Parents preference.
  • Mental and physical health of parties.
  • Child’s community, school and home environment.
  • Parental history of violence.
  • Relationship between child and each parent.
  • Moral standing is consideration – adultery may be a factor here.

Parental Visitation – a schedule to be decided upon in advance when shared custody is agreed upon and ordered by the court.

Marital Settlement Agreement – a formal agreement between the divorcing parties spelling out agreed upon terms regarding finances, dependent care, shared visitation, and expenses incurred over child support obligations for dependents.

Divorce action types in Collier County, 20th Judicial Circuit include:

  • 1) Simplified dissolution of marriage – same day filing, if both parties agree that the marriage cannot be saved, at least one of the parties has been a resident of Collier County for six months, the division of property and obligations are handled, there are no children as a result of the marriage (or pending pregnancies), there will be no alimony sought out and both parties are giving up the right to trial or appeal on the matter;
  • 2) Dissolution of marriage with dependent children – Parent education and family stabilization course must be attended with certification filed in court, the marriage must be irretrievably broken, and there must be a child or pregnancy resulting from the marriage, and one of the parties must be a resident of Collier County for six months.
  • 3) Dissolution of marriage with no children – Both parties have marital assets and liabilities but there are no dependents resulting from the marriage and the wife is not pregnant, one of the parties must be a resident of Collier County for six months.
  • 4) Dissolution of marriage with no children or property – Both parties have no marital assets or liabilities, no minor dependents, the wife is not pregnant and one of the parties must reside in Collier County for six months.

Consult with an experienced family law attorney at The Law Offices of Michael M. Raheb because divorce is a time consuming, emotional, financial and family upheaval for which you will need to seek a professional to guide you in the right direction for your personal, family and financial future.

The Law Offices of Michael M. Raheb, P.A.
2423 First Street,
Fort Myers FL 33901
Office: 239-226-0888
Fax Number: 866-949-0888




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