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Divorce Can Get Messy

Arriving at a decision to divorce can be a hard-fought battle on its own. When the decision to divorce is firm, finding the right Milwaukee family law attorney becomes an immediate and invaluable priority.

Our attorneys are zealous advocates for the rights and best interests of each client in court and when negotiating a divorce settlement.

Have You Been Served Divorce Papers?

If you were recently served divorce papers in Wisconsin, you only have 20 days to respond! You need to act fast and get ahead of the process by consulting one of our experienced divorce attorneys.

We understand the amount of stress, anxiety and sheer energy expenditure it takes to end a marriage and keep moving forward. We bring unclouded vision and unmatched determination to your side of the case so you can focus on holding it together while in the midst of upheaval.

We’ll be honest with you about how things usually shakedown in divorce court and what your best, most realistic options are.

You may be planning an uncontested divorce or legal separation and wondering if you really need to hire an attorney. Remember the lesson most recently learned from marriage: things change.

Contact a veteran divorce attorney in Milwaukee, Glendale, Brookfield, Madison, or Appleton



Types of Divorce

In Wisconsin

Wisconsin is a no-fault divorce state, meaning the only necessary ground for divorce is an irretrievable breakdown of a marriage. In other words, you can call a spade a spade without having to prove fault on one side or the other.




Most divorces in Wisconsin are uncontested, meaning no courtroom litigation. Uncontested divorces are also referred to as stipulated divorces. 

Even if you and your soon-to-be-ex agree on the big issues like division of assets, child custody, and allocation of debts, it’s still in your best interest to hire an experienced divorce lawyer before taking legal action.

Our divorce mediation lawyers get to know you and your priorities and make recommendations based on our in-depth understanding of Wisconsin divorce law.

It’s not uncommon for a divorce to begin as uncontested until the claws come out. When the unexpected arises during divorce proceedings, we’re by your side to smooth out the wrinkles and neutralize any threats to your successful outcome.



In a contested divorce the spouses either disagree about getting divorced or about the terms of the divorce.

In many cases, a couple undergoing a contested divorce reaches a divorce settlement before going to trial.

It’s crucial to have effective representation during all stages of a contested divorce. Our attorneys are highly skilled in courtroom litigation and settlement negotiation and will see you through the adversities and complexities of a contested divorce.

The Divorce Process

Uncontested Divorce Laws in Wisconsin

To file for an uncontested divorce in Wisconsin, you must have a stipulated settlement agreement, outlining financial & custody matters, and meet residency rules: 30 days in the county or marriage in the state within the past year, plus a 6-month state residency for divorce. The final judgment usually takes 120 days in Wisconsin.

Is Pro Se

An Option For Me?

The phrase “pro se” is Latin meaning “on one’s own behalf.” When you proceed with a divorce without an attorney, you are proceeding pro se, meaning you are representing yourself. Divorce forms and paperwork are accessible online or at the courthouses. You will be responsible for completing all the necessary forms to submit to the court.

The number of people who represent themselves during divorce is continually rising. If you are going through a complicated divorce with child placement, support payments, or business complications, representing yourself is not in your best interest. Divorce law can be tricky, filled with many intricacies that may not be known to pro se parties. Many times people who initially proceed pro se in court end up having to return to court later on to renegotiate issues that were not fully resolved. Hiring an attorney from the start can save you time and money in the long run.

We do offer guidance on the pro se process. Our professionals can help you select the correct documents and provide legal advice without requiring full representation. Please contact Divergent Family Law to consult with an attorney regarding these options.


What About

Legal Separation?

Legal separation provides a middle ground for when a different-sex couple or a same-sex couple doesn’t want to divorce but also doesn’t want to continue living as married.

In Wisconsin, legal separation follows a similar process to divorce but leaves the marriage intact. There are still matters of property, debt, child custody and spousal support to work out before the court grants your separation.

If you reconcile with your spouse, a legal separation can be revoked. A judge can also convert a legal separation into a divorce after a year, or possibly sooner if both parties agree.

A divorce lawyer can help you when what begins as legal separation becomes a divorce when you and your spouse disagree on the details of the separation, or if you need help determining the best type of divorce to pursue.

We have family law offices throughout Wisconsin to assist you with any type of divorce.


What Is A

Default Divorce?

To begin a divorce the non-filing party must be served with the Summons and Petition.  If the non-filing party does not respond to the Petition and the filing party has taken all measures to engage them in the action, the court can proceed with granting a divorce judgment. This is referred to as a default divorce.

A default divorce does not happen very often. When it does, the filing party will be granted all the terms that they are requesting from the court, so long as the court can justify the terms according to the laws.

References: Prisoner Litigation. Wisconsin State Legislature: 801.02 (7) (b) 2. (2024). | Personal jurisdiction, manner of serving summons for. Wisconsin State Legislature: 801.11 (2024) | Grounds for divorce and legal separation. Wisconsin State Legislature: 767.315 (1) (a) (2024). |

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