When you decide that your marriage is over, you might want to have the divorce finalized as quickly as possible. This is understandable, but you must realize that there are some factors that can make the divorce process last longer.
It is imperative to realize that some of these factors can't be controlled. You should go into the divorce process with a sense of urgency, but also with an understanding that things might prolong your divorce. Here are some factors that might affect the time it takes:
State waiting period
In Tennessee, there is a 60-day waiting period for divorces without children. With children, there is a 90-day waiting period. These are the minimum number of days that can occur between the filing of the petition and the finalization of the order. There aren't any ways that you can speed this up. In some cases, a backlogged court system might end up making it take longer than this.
Property division negotiations
Property division negotiations can take time. You and your ex will have to work together to get these matters all sorted out. This means that each asset and every debt have to be assigned to either you or your ex. Your ability to work with your ex on these matters can have a direct impact on how long it takes your divorce to be completed.
Child custody matters
If you and your ex have minor children, you have to work through all of the issues that are present with the children. This includes setting the parenting time schedule, child support matters and decision-making powers. Again, this is an area where the ability of you and your ex to work together can have a big impact. You might not get your way on everything and your ex might not either. The important thing here is to make sure that your children's best interests are kept at the heart of the matter.
Other issues in your divorce can also prolong the process. For example, if one party is asking for alimony and the other party doesn't want to pay, the process might take longer than if there was an agreement.
Negotiations can stall out
Because there are so many variables in divorce, you might find that you just can't predict how long things will take. You and your ex might end up stalling during the negotiations. This could lead to your having to go through a trial to get matters settled. A trial will take longer than mediation, so you should try your best to work through what you can.