How to Get A Divorce in Less than a Year

Divorce by Mutual Consent

Maryland has added a new ground for divorce which changes the wait time to get a divorce. This law went into effect on October 1, 2015. The divorce ground is called “Mutual Consent.” Prior to this law, every married person had to wait a year to get divorced, and there were no exceptions. Now, couples who do not have minor children will be able to get divorced without a waiting period.

Factors for Divorce by Mutual Consent

So long as you meet the following factors, you may get a divorce on the grounds of Mutual Consent:

  1. There are no minor children born as a result of the marriage;
  2. The parties have a signed, written separation agreement that resolves all issues surrounding the marriage, including alimony and property distribution (or waiver thereof);
  3. Neither party asks the Court to set aside or overturn the signed, written separation agreement; and
  4. Both parties are present in Court for the final divorce hearing.

No Separation Period

Divorce by Mutual Consent means that there is no wait time on when you can get divorced. This is wonderful development means that you do not have to wait an entire year before getting divorced. Instead, you can get one as soon as the four factors above are met.

Divorce by Mutual Consent is Not Available to Everyone

Unfortunately, not everyone will be able to use this ground for divorce. If you have minor children, you will still have to live separate and apart from your spouse for at least a year before you can ask the Court for a divorce, even if you have a written, signed separation agreement.

It is possible that the Maryland legislation could one day apply the divorce ground of Mutual Consent for couples who have minor children. That is something that we can hopefully look forward to in the future.

Dana Whitten, Rockville, Maryland divorce attorney, represents clients throughout Maryland. Get more answers here to your frequently asked questions about Maryland divorce. Contact the Law Offices of Dana K. Whitten for a consultation about your specific concerns.

Categories: Divorce