What You Need to Know About the Cost of a Divorce in Florida

Divorce, also known as marriage dissolution, is a process that can have significant financial implications. In Florida, the cost of divorce can vary widely depending on several factors. This article aims to provide a comprehensive overview of what you need to know about the cost of a divorce in Florida.

The Cost of Divorce

Average Cost of Divorce in Florida

The average cost of a divorce in Florida can be broken down into two categories: divorces with children and divorces without children.

  • Without Children: The average cost of divorce in Florida without children is approximately $13,500. This includes all divorce expenses such as legal fees, court costs, and other related expenses.
  • With Children: If the couple has children, the average cost of divorce increases to around $20,300. This increase is due to additional costs related to child custody and support arrangements.

Factors Influencing the Cost of Divorce

Several factors can influence the cost of a divorce in Florida. These include:

  • Attorney’s Fees: The cost of hiring a divorce attorney can vary widely. The average hourly rate for a divorce lawyer in Florida ranges from $175 to $500.
  • Court Filing Fees: The average filing fee for a divorce in Florida is around $420. However, some county courts may charge additional fees.
  • Summons Fees: If you need to serve your spouse with divorce papers, you may need to pay a summons fee.
  • Process Server Fees: If you hire a process server to deliver the divorce papers to your spouse, this will also add to your divorce costs.

The Role of Contested Issues in Divorce Costs

Whether your divorce is contested or uncontested can significantly impact the cost. A contested divorce, where the parties cannot agree on issues such as property division, alimony, or child support, can be much more expensive due to the increased legal fees and court costs. On the other hand, an uncontested divorce, where both parties agree on all issues, can be less costly and quicker.

Cost of Online Divorce Services in Florida

For those seeking a more affordable option, online divorce services in Florida may be a viable alternative. These services typically range from $495 to $795. However, it’s important to note that these services are best suited for uncontested divorces with no complex issues to resolve.

Navigating the Divorce Process in Florida

Understanding the divorce process in Florida can help you better navigate this challenging time and potentially minimize your divorce costs.

The Process of Filing for Divorce in Florida

The process of filing for divorce in Florida involves several steps:

  • Prepare the Divorce Petition: The first step is to prepare the divorce petition, which outlines the grounds for divorce and the desired outcome in terms of property division, alimony, child custody, and other issues.
  • File the Divorce Petition: The divorce petition must be filed with the court, and the filing fee must be paid.
  • Serve the Divorce Papers: The divorce papers must be served to the other spouse, either by a process server or through certified mail.
  • Respond to the Divorce Petition: The other spouse has a certain period to respond to the divorce petition. If they fail to respond, the court may grant a default judgment.
  • Negotiate a Divorce Settlement: If possible, the spouses should try to negotiate a divorce settlement to avoid a lengthy and costly court battle.
  • Finalize the Divorce: Once the divorce settlement is agreed upon or the court makes a decision, the divorce decree is issued, finalizing the divorce.

The Role of Attorneys in Divorce Proceedings

Hiring a divorce attorney can be asignificant expense, but their expertise can be invaluable, especially in contested divorces. They can provide legal advice, represent you in court, and help negotiate a fair divorce settlement. However, if your divorce is uncontested and straightforward, you might consider a DIY divorce to save on attorney’s fees.

Uncontested vs. Contested Divorce: Cost Implications

As mentioned earlier, whether your divorce is contested or uncontested can significantly impact the cost.

  • Uncontested Divorce: In an uncontested divorce, both parties agree on all issues, including property division, alimony, child custody, and child support. This type of divorce is usually quicker and less expensive as it avoids a lengthy court battle.
  • Contested Divorce: In a contested divorce, the parties cannot agree on one or more issues, leading to a court trial. This process can be lengthy and expensive due to increased legal fees and court costs.

 How to Minimize Divorce Costs

While divorce can be costly, there are ways to minimize the financial impact. These include opting for mediation over a court trial, agreeing on a divorce settlement, and considering online divorce services for uncomplicated cases. It’s also important to understand your financial situation, including marital assets, marital debt, and potential alimony and child support obligations.


How much is a wife entitled to in a divorce in Florida?

In Florida, the division of assets is based on an “equitable distribution” system. This means that marital assets (and debts) should be divided fairly, though not necessarily equally. Factors such as the length of the marriage, each spouse’s economic circumstances, and contributions to the marriage are considered.

What are the disadvantages of filing for divorce first in Florida?

Filing first for divorce does not necessarily give you an advantage in the proceedings. However, it can allow you to prepare and may provide a psychological advantage.

Do I have to pay for my wife’s lawyer in a divorce in Florida?

In some cases, one spouse may be ordered to pay the other spouse’s legal fees. This typically happens when there is a significant disparity in income or financial resources between the spouses.

What is the husband entitled to in a divorce in Florida?

Like a wife, a husband is entitled to an equitable distribution of marital assets and debts. He may also be entitled to alimony, depending on various factors, including the length of the marriage and the financial status of each spouse.

Divorce can be a complex and costly process. Understanding the potential costs and the factors that influence these costs can help you prepare and potentially minimize your financial burden. Always consult with a legal professional to understand your options and the potential implications of your decisions.