Understanding Maryland Mutual Consent Divorce Requirements
On October 1st, 2015 a new law went into effect that allows some parties going through a divorce to potentially avoid proving fault grounds or establishing the twelve month separation period. The new Maryland “mutual consent” grounds require that the parties have an agreement that resolves all issues arising out of their marriage, that the parties have no minor children in common, that neither party moves to set aside the agreement, and that both parties appear at the final divorce hearing.
Once you and your spouse have signed a Marital Settlement Agreement, assuming that you meet the other requirements, you must appear in court for an uncontested divorce hearing. When parties proceed on the grounds of twelve month separation, a witness is required to corroborate the parties’ marriage and separation. The question now is: are witnesses required to proceed with an uncontested divorce based on mutual consent? The answer is, “it depends”. At this time, some counties in Maryland are requiring a witness to proceed on mutual consent grounds. Other counties do not require a witness. It’s important to discuss your case with an experienced divorce attorney in Maryland to determine the best way to proceed with your case.
Call the Law Offices of Brandon Bernstein at 240.394.1418 to schedule a free in-person consultation. We’ll begin discussing your case, including prospectively the best way to proceed with a Mutual Consent divorce in Maryland.