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What is the Difference Between an "Uncontested" or "Contested" Divorce, Legal Separation, or Annulment?

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An "Uncontested" Case

When you and your spouse or partner CAN AGREE about the money and parenting issues in your divorce, legal separation, or annulment. 

  • In many cases, the filing of a Response document may not be necessary by your spouse or partner.
  • Most uncontested family law cases require little in-person contact with the court, as many issues can be resolved through the mail.


A "Contested" Case

When you and your spouse or partner CANNOT AGREE on one or more issues of your divorce, legal separation, or annulment - or if your spouse or partner files a Response.

If you are in a contested case, you may want to try mediation or another form of dispute resolution rather than going through a court trial, in order to save emotional and financial resources.

If child support, spousal or partner support are issues, you can contact the court's office of the Family Law Facilitator. Opens new window The Facilitator assists people who don't have an attorney with child support, spousal or partner support, and paternity matters. The Facilitator doesn't represent you or your spouse or partner, but can help you better represent yourself.

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