Helping you through every stage of your divorce in Tennessee
The decision to end a marriage is never an easy one: when your life has been linked to another person’s, it can be difficult to remember where you star and your partner ends. There are a number of considerations to be aware of through the process; a thorough, dedicated Knoxville divorce lawyer can help you understand what they are and what you may face. At Banks and Jones, we offer comprehensive legal services to clients who wish to end their marriages. We create proactive strategies with your goals in mind, and have the skills and experience necessary to protect those goals in court when necessary.
What is a marital dissolution agreement?
The grounds for getting divorced in Tennessee
When you and your spouse wish to file for divorce, you can file for fault or no-fault. In order to obtain a no-fault divorce, where both couples agree that there are irreconcilable differences that cannot be overcome, you and your spouse need to:
- Create a parenting plan together
- Settle on how your property will be divided
- Make decisions about whether or not alimony will be paid
- Participate in divorce mediation (if required)
- Wait 60 days after the petition has been filed, or 90 days if you have unmarried, minor children
You can also file for a no-fault divorce under the grounds of separation, if you and your spouse have lived apart for at least two years, have not lived under the roof at any time during those two years, and have no minor children. Most no-fault divorces are uncontested divorces.
If you cannot come to an agreement – either as to why you want to divorce, or about how your lives will be divided, then you must file under fault-based grounds. Those grounds are: [ref]
- Malicious or willful desertion by one spouse for one year
- Criminal conviction that “renders the party infamous”
- Being sentenced to prison
- Attempted harm or murder
- Refusal to move to Tennessee (if both parties previously lived outside of the state)
- Pregnancy by another partner
- Habitual drunkenness or drug abuse
- “Cruel and inhuman treatment”
- Inflicting indignities upon your spouse
Do I need an attorney if my spouse has hired an attorney?
Divorce and family law services we offer
Our Knoxville divorce lawyers offer a wide array of services for our clients throughout the state. Every case we take is built on the individual needs of the client, but we focus primarily on:
- Divorce. When it is time to dissolve your marriage, our competent and compassionate divorce lawyers can help. We provide mediation services, create Marital Dissolution Agreements (MDAs) and represent you in court if your case cannot be resolved through negotiations. We also craft pre- and post-nuptial agreements.
- Property distribution. Because Tennessee is an equitable distribution state, there is no guarantee that your assets or your debts will be divided equally. A skilled divorce lawyer from Banks & Jones can help you keep what is yours, and will fight to protect your interests.
- Alimony. Alimony, sometimes called spousal support or maintenance, is a delicate issue. Alimony awards are completely subjective, based on the opinions of the judge you see in court. For that reason, it is imperative that you work with a divorce lawyer who is familiar with the different judges in different jurisdictions to increase your chances of a resolution that’s best for you.
- Post-divorce modification. They say the best laid plans can go astray, and that’s true of divorce agreements, too. If an issue arises where you need your MDA amended – for, say, a change in alimony payments, or because you need to move, and that affects your custody plan – we can help you through the process.
- Child custody. In Tennessee, a family law judge is only concerned with the best interests of your child. Through our skilled representation, we help make it clear that our clients’ best interests are in line with their children’s best interests. Whether you are fighting for custody, making a case about paternity, or are a grandparent seeking visitation, we can help.
- Child support. Tennessee provides guidelines for how much support the noncustodial parent must pay, but there are multiple factors which go into the decision. We can ensure that your child’s best interests are met in a fair and just way.
Getting a divorce may not always be easy, but it does not have to be impossible. At Banks and Jones, we create options for our clients that are suited to their individual needs and goals. We offer practical support and guidance in uncontested divorces on grounds of irreconcilable differences, and work together with your soon-to-be-ex if that is what is best for you.
But if your marriage dissolution proves contentious, our domestic litigators do not step down from the fight. We keep our eyes on the prize of a resolution that works for you, and we are unafraid to do so in a courtroom when necessary. When you work with Banks and Jones, you are never alone in the fight for your future.
Speak with a trusted Knoxville divorce lawyer about your case
The decision to end your marriage is a deeply personal one. You want a lawyer who can help you look after your own best interests. At Banks and Jones, we protect the futures of our Knoxville clients by fighting on their behalf. To learn more about how we can help you, please call 865-546-2141 or contact us online to schedule a consultation with one of our dedicated family law attorneys.