Filing for Divorce

Rice Divorce Team Offers Counsel in Memphis & Beyond

There are tactical advantages for the person who files first. The legal document that starts the proceeding is the Petition for Divorce, or the Complaint. It also covers certain technical matters and asks the court for anything you might want.

If you and your spouse cannot agree on something (e.g. support, visitation, property division, attorney’s fees, court costs, maiden name restored), then you must ask the court for it in the petition or the court cannot give it to you. If the list seems long or includes more than you think is appropriate, try to think of it as a wish list. If the wording seems strange, remember that it is a formal legal document and much of the wording is required by law. If your spouse has already filed, be sure that your lawyer has a copy of the petition as soon as possible.

The person who files first is the plaintiff or petitioner. The other person is the defendant or respondent, and that person must respond to your petition in a formal document known as an answer. The defendant may also want to complain that the plaintiff was at fault. To do so, the defendant files a Countercomplaint.

If possible, talk to your spouse about divorce before you file. It is hard to keep open lines of communication if your spouse has been surprised by the sheriff serving divorce papers on him or her at 4:00 A.M. (which is when the sheriff often serves papers).

If you are considering filing for divorce, speak with a Memphis family lawyer at Rice Divorce Team. Contact us at (901) 425-1274 today.

Reviews from People Who Have Been There

  • I appreciated he and his staff keeping me informed during the entire process.

    “Nick was very helpful during a very difficult time in my life. ”

    Adrienne

  • I was in the best hands throughout the process.

    “Not only were they extremely prepared for court but they also ensured that I too was prepared for court.”

    Angie

  • Without his help I would have never been able to raise my children.

    “The end result has been that my kids have spent at least half the time with me and eight years later we’re looking at two well rounded Christians and College Scholarships for my oldest who graduates this year.”

    Russell

  • Things went very smoothly. He undid the damage caused by the first attorney.

    “After having a very bad experience with my initial attorney, I retained George Rice to complete my divorce...I was pleased with my outcome.”

    Ronnie

  • We walk into his office with a heavy heart and walk out knowing we have the best on our side!

    “I recommend his entire office and staff to anyone needing legal help.”

    Leanne