Does It Matter Who Files For Divorce First?

Divorce is a major life decision, and once it is decided, the question of who should file for divorce first arises. Some argue that the first person to file has an advantage over them, while others counter that it doesn’t matter. In any case, it’s important to comprehend the potential consequences of filing for divorce before making a decision. So does it matter who initiates or who should file for divorce first? Let’s investigate this issue together.

Does It Matter Who Files For Divorce First?
Does It Matter Who Files For Divorce First?

Does It Matter Who Files For Divorce First?

The question of whether it matters who should file for divorce is a common one, and the answer varies based on the facts of the case. The answer might be “yes” in some circumstances, but it might not matter at all in others. These are some things to think about:

Legal benefits

The divorce petitioner may be granted certain legal benefits in some jurisdictions or nations. For instance, in some jurisdictions, the party who files first might get the chance to present their case first and might have more influence on how quickly the divorce will be finalised. Furthermore, in some states, the divorce hearing location may be chosen by the party who submits the divorce petition first.

Strategic advantages

Divorce petitioning first can also have certain tactical benefits. For instance, the spouse who files first may be able to freeze any joint financial accounts or assets that need to be divided, preventing the other spouse from making withdrawals. They might also be capable of recommending the issues that are most important to them and set the tone for the divorce procedures.

Emotional impact

Making the decision to file for divorce can be challenging, yet by doing so, the person may feel in control or empowered. There is no right or wrong way to approach the process, but it’s vital to keep in mind that the emotional impact of filing for divorce might differ from person to person.

In the end, the particulars of the case will determine whether it matters who files for divorce first. Filing early may offer tactical and legal advantages in some circumstances, but it might not matter much in others. It’s crucial to begin the divorce process with a clear awareness of your rights and obligations and to seek the advice of an expert family law attorney, regardless of who files first.

Also Read: Disadvantages of Filing For Divorce First

What Happens When You File For Divorce First?

The term “petitioner” or “plaintiff” refers to the spouse who files for divorce first. The opposite partner is referred to as the “respondent” or “defendant” at that point. When one spouse initiates the divorce process, the following things may occur:

What happens when you file for divorce first

1. Jurisdiction

The state where the petitioner resides will determine which court the divorce will be filed in. If the spouses reside in different states or nations, this may be crucial.

2. Temporary directives

Temporary orders for items like child custody, child support, and spousal support might be asked for by the petitioner. During the divorce process, these orders may help to offer stability and organisation.

3. Control of the process

By submitting the required papers, setting court appearance dates, and deciding how to proceed with the case, the petitioner can manage the divorce process’ timetable.

4. Emotional Impact

Making the choice to divorce can be emotionally draining, and it can be challenging to predict how the other spouse will respond. The person filing the petition might feel guilty, relieved, or hesitant.

5. Representation in court

The petitioner will have to engage legal counsel or appear in court unrepresented. The divorce may become more expensive and complicated if the respondent decides to retain legal counsel.

6. Negotiations

Because the petitioner started the divorce, they could be more aggressive in talks. Depending on the situation, this can result in more heated arguments or productive discussions.

7. Financial transparency

During the divorce procedure, both spouses will have to reveal their financial details. This information must be provided by the petitioner first, setting the tone for how cooperative the other spouse will be.

Also Read: How Long Does Divorce Take In Florida?


What if only one person wants a divorce?

If only one person wants a divorce, they can still file for divorce. However, the process may be more complicated if the other person contests it.

Who files for divorce the most?

According to studies, women file for divorce more frequently than males do, with some estimates putting the number at 70%. Yet, depending on elements like age, education, and cultural background, divorce causes and the gender gaps in divorce initiating can change.

Why do men file for divorce?

There is no single answer to this issue because each person and scenario is unique. But, some common reasons for males filing for divorce include falling out of love, infidelity, and communication problems.