Pennsylvania law, and specifically the waiting period for divorces, has changed significantly over the last few months. In October 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed a bill that changes the waiting period for divorces from two years to one year after separation when one of the parties is not consenting to the divorce.
Previously, the Pennsylvania Divorce Code provided that if a party did not want a divorce, the divorce matter could proceed for two years after the parties had separated until they were able to obtain a final divorce decree. This new law has changed this time period dramatically by cutting it half, allowing divorces to move more quickly than before.
If both parties are in agreement, or are consenting to the divorce, the 90-day divorce period has not changed. However, when one party wants to move the divorce forward and the other party is not consenting, the two-year waiting period is now reduced to one year. This will allow divorces to move more quickly through the court system, and will give the parties a reason to discuss a settlement of their marital assets and debts through the equitable distribution process in a more expeditious manner. Furthermore, if the parties have minor children and are working on a custody agreement, the shorter waiting period may allow the parties to reach a final custody order, and thus create predictability and stability in their children’s lives sooner than they would with a two-year waiting period.
Have questions about this change in the law and how it could affect your divorce filing? Contact us today to set up a consultation!