Divorce Lawyer Providing Experienced Representation for Divorce Matters in Rhode Island

Family, Divorce, Criminal Defense Lawyer Susan T. Perkins of Providence, Rhode Island

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Providence Divorce Lawyer with Extensive Experience

Best of the Best Family Law Attorneys 2023

Susan T. Perkins is a top rated Rhode Island divorce lawyer located in Providence, RI. Attorney Susan T. Perkins have own multiple awards and has been selected in the top 10 family attorneys in Rhode Island.

The divorce process can be confusing and complex. RI divorce lawyer Susan T. Perkins wants all of her clients to have access to the information they need so they feel confident about moving forward with their divorce.

Divorce Attorney Susan T. Perkins has experience with:

If you need legal advice on your divorce case call (401) 324-2990 today the Law Offices of Susan T. Perkins, Esq. to schedule a Free Consultation

Rhode Island Divorce Law Information

Below you’ll find information on: 

You’ve tried everything, but your marriage just can’t seem to work. Let Rhode Island Divorce Attorney Susan T. Perkins help you untie that knot. 

Marriage is a legal relationship between two people, but when it doesn’t last ‘till death-do-us-part, many legal matters can arise quickly and unexpectedly. Easy or complex divorce, you’ll need an experienced Rhode Island divorce lawyer to help you find your way to a settlement that’s agreeable to all parties involved. 

Hiring a Divorce Lawyer in Rhode Island

Rhode Island Divorce Attorney Susan T. Perkins has the experience to understand any legal issues that may arise during your divorce. She uses her creativity and flexibility to discover new ways to problem-solve. She also has the dedication, patience, and compassion to help you cope during this potentially stressful time.

As a divorce lawyer, it’s her job to reduce stress related to your divorce and family law matters. Divorce Lawyer Susan T. Perkins is the kind of divorce attorney that will vigorously represent your case, no matter the circumstances.

Whether your case calls for litigation through court appearances, collaboration, or mediation, Rhode Island divorce lawyer Susan T. Perkins has the skills and experience in divorce and family law to help guide you through the divorce process.

A dissolution of marriage can be an emotional event in people’s lives. It necessitates an attorney who understands the intricacies of divorce and is sensitive to this fact. 

Differences Between Uncontested Divorce and Contested Divorce in Rhode Island 

There are two types of divorce: uncontested and contested. 

Uncontested Divorce 

An uncontested divorce in Rhode Island, or collaborative divorce, is one in which both sides are in agreement and simply need the guidance of the courts and divorce attorneys to iron out the fine details.

This type of divorce will likely move quickly through the court system and will cost less than a contested divorce. 

Contested Divorce 

A contested divorce, or traditional divorce, is one in which the two parties do not see eye-to-eye on the divorce terms and requires a skilled divorce attorney to successfully mediate the situation.

In the event of a contested divorce, the process will be similar to that of any typical lawsuit where one party sues another.

The divorce will then proceed in three stages: commencement, discovery, and settlement or trial.

With a skilled and experienced divorce attorney, you’re likely to see your contested divorce reach a settlement before a trial occurs. 

Rhode Island divorce lawyer Susan T. Perkins is licensed in Rhode Island, Connecticut, and Massachusetts.

She cares about her clients and listens to what they want. Regardless if you end up facing a contested divorce or uncontested divorce, she will be there for you and keep you fully informed about your case. 

Mediation in Rhode Island 

If you and your spouse want to divorce, but you also want to avoid a bitter divorce, discuss the possibility of mediation with your lawyer.

Mediation is seen as an alternative to going to divorce court and it accomplishes the same goals: splitting assets, agreeing on child custody, child support, alimony, and many other factors. It provides an environment that’s more open to collaboration and compromises a much less hostile than a court trial and tends to lead to faster resolutions and costs much less. 

If you’re interested in getting a divorce, call Rhode Island divorce attorney Susan T. Perkins at (401) 324-2990 to discuss the path of mediation. 

What You Need to Know About Divorce in Rhode Island 

For more information read the following section with common questions and answers about divorce in Rhode Island:

Do I need a divorce lawyer in Rhode Island?

It’s never recommended to face a divorce without an experienced divorce lawyer on your side. Even when the divorce appears to be amicable and both parties agree on things like living arrangements, child support, division of property, and other details, it’s always smart to have legal representation and hire an experienced divorce attorney to handle your divorce.

  • First, you shouldn’t have to go through the divorce process alone. There’s no question that divorce can be stressful, scary, and incredibly emotional. Even when you know that a divorce is the best path for you and your soon-to-be ex-partner, it can still stir up feelings of confusion, regret, anger, or sadness. This is not the ideal state of mind to be in while you’re trying to file the necessary paperwork, negotiate, and agree on the terms and conditions of your divorce.
  • Second, filing for divorce can be a complicated process. Any mistakes made on paperwork can set your divorce back and create a lot of obstacles. If you don’t have any previous legal experience, your best approach is to allow a trusted Rhode Island divorce lawyer to handle this for you.
  • Lastly, filing for divorce and handling the legal tasks associated with divorce can be very time-consuming. Most people going through a divorce don’t have the extra hours in the day to devote to complex paperwork and negotiations that a divorce involves. 

How much does a Rhode Island divorce attorney cost?

This is an important question. In order to properly budget your divorce and feel financially secure moving forward, you need to know how much a Rhode Island divorce attorney costs. Unfortunately, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, simply because every divorce is different.

The more complicated a divorce is, the more it can cost. For instance, if you and your soon-to-be ex-partner have multiple properties, share a business, have children, live in different cities, or are approaching a highly contested divorce, it can be costly. On the other hand, if you haven’t been married that long, you have no children, no shared credit, and you are going to file an uncontested divorce, it will be a lot less expensive. 

Your best approach is to contact a trusted and experienced divorce attorney as soon as possible so you can discuss your budget and formulate a path to divorce that’s effective and affordable. 

Take advantage of a free consultation appointment at our Rhode Island law office so you can get a better idea of how much your divorce will cost. Call the best RI divorce attorney today to learn more about the financial implications of a divorce. 

How do I choose a divorce attorney? 

Even though divorce is common and it happens every day in Rhode Island, not every divorce, or divorce attorney, are the same. You should consider a few key things when choosing the right Rhode Island divorce attorney.

  • First, you want someone who specializes in family law and divorce in the state.
  • Second, you want to make sure that they have extensive experience in divorce proceedings. Going with a divorce lawyer with little experience in family law can be a risky move. You never know when an uncontested divorce can suddenly turn ugly. You want to be sure you’ve hired someone that can tackle any obstacle that comes your way.
  • Lastly, you want to choose a divorce lawyer that’s compassionate, understanding, and effective. You want a divorce attorney that’s available to you and can answer all your questions.

Make sure that you’re hiring an attorney that is dedicated to your case and has the patience and emotional capacity to be there for you throughout the process. 

Rhode Island divorce attorney Susan T. Perkins doesn’t only have years of experience in divorce and family law, but she also knows the many challenges that clients face when going through a divorce. Call our law office today to talk to the best divorce attorney in Rhode Island. 

How do you serve divorce papers in Rhode Island?

According to Rhode Island law, you cannot serve the divorce papers yourself. You need to serve your soon-to-be ex-spouse with divorce papers through a neutral third party or by the local sheriff’s office.

What is an uncontested divorce?

With an uncontested divorce, both parties agree that the marriage should be terminated. Both parties have also agreed on all aspects of the division of property, alimony, and child custody.

Is there a special process for an uncontested divorce in Rhode Island?

No. In Rhode Island, you simply file for a no-fault divorce. When in court, you explain that you agree on all issues regarding your divorce. One spouse claims “irreconcilable differences”.

Do I need an attorney for an uncontested divorce?

Because they’re in a general agreement, some believe that they may not need a divorce attorney. However, there are a lot of benefits that come along with hiring an attorney, even in an uncontested divorce.

Even an uncontested divorce can be emotionally draining, so it’s important to have legal counsel that has your back. Contact the Law Office of Susan T. Perkins, Esq. to learn more about why it’s important to hire an attorney, even for an amicable divorce. 

If you know that you’re ready to move forward with your divorce, contact our law office to schedule a free consultation. We can discuss your circumstances and come up with a legal strategy that works for you. Remember, you don’t have to go through your divorce alone. Call the divorce attorney Susan T. Perkins today. 

Why should you choose mediation in Rhode Island?

After you’ve reviewed the process of mediation above and you have a better idea of what mediation involves, you can decide if it’s the right choice for you. To help you make that decision, here are a few benefits of going down the path of mediation for your divorce:

  • Economical for both sides
  • Quicker settlements
  • More predictable and collaborative than a trial 
  • Less hostile than going through the courts
  • Includes comprehensive agreements that more likely lead to compliance on both sides

While mediation can be a positive, effective, and amicable way of handling a divorce, it’s also not for everyone. However, if you believe that you’re ready to explore mediation for your divorce, contact an experienced Rhode Island divorce attorney today.  

What’s the difference between divorce and a legal separation?

While a legal separation and a divorce are technically different, they are very similar in the sense that they both involve legal contracts that define the terms and conditions of a separation. If you’re trying to decide between a legal separation or a divorce, you should ask yourself a few questions.

Are you prepared to live apart from your spouse?

Do you still have feelings for your spouse?

Do you believe that reconciliation is possible? 

These are the types of questions a Rhode Island divorce attorney might ask you to make sure that you feel confident and prepared to move forward with a divorce. If you’re feeling unsure about ending your marriage, but you believe you need time apart, a legal separation may be a better choice for you. A legal separation gives you space and time to explore the possibility of a divorce, without finalizing the dissolution of your marriage. Working with a divorce lawyer through a legal separation can also help you protect yourself and your assets. 

What does it mean to be a “no-fault” divorce state? Is Rhode Island a no-fault divorce state? 

Yes, Rhode Island is a no-fault divorce state. 

There are a lot of common misconceptions out there about what “no-fault” actually means in a divorce.

Some people believe that in a no-fault divorce each party gets half of their estate. This is not the case.

No-fault simply means that in order to file for a divorce in Rhode Island, you don’t have to prove grounds of fault. You can say there are “irreconcilable differences” and both parties have agreed to take responsibility for the marriage coming to an end. 

What are the requirements for a no-fault divorce in Rhode Island?

There are a few minimal requirements to file for a no-fault divorce in Rhode Island. These are:

  • Both spouses must have been living in Rhode Island for more than one year before the divorce.
  • Irreconcilable differences have caused the marriage to be beyond repair,
  • OR you and your spouse have been living separately for more than three years.

Is Rhode Island a 50/50 divorce state?

Rhode Island is not a 50/50 divorce state or “community property” state.

Since Rhode Island is not a 50/50 divorce state, you’ll need to take an inventory of all of your shared property, accounts, assets, debts, investments, and negotiate on how all of this will be divided after the settlement of your divorce.

This is one of the reasons why it’s so important to work closely with a Rhode Island divorce attorney with experience.

Is adultery illegal in Rhode Island?

In Rhode Island, adultery is still considered a crime.

The adulterer can receive a fine, typically set around $500.00, for breaking their marriage contract due to engaging in a sexual relationship outside of the marriage.

Can one spouse stop paying for household expenses?

No. When a complaint is filed, court orders are put into effect that maintain the “status quo”.

For example, one spouse may not stop depositing their paycheck into a joint household account. No one may remove funds from joint accounts.

How do I file a divorce complaint in Rhode Island?

it’s best to consult with a Rhode Island divorce attorney, who will provide you with all the necessary paperwork. Your lawyer will also file the paperwork with the courts for you.

What forms are needed to file for a divorce in Rhode Island?

Your lawyer will file several forms with the court. If you do not have a lawyer, you will have to file them yourself. The clerk won’t be able to help you. Forms can be found online. The required forms are:

  1. A complaint
  2. A DR6
  3. Two statements listing the children of the divorce
  4. A family services counseling report form
  5. A report of divorce
  6. A copy of the marriage certificate
  7. The summons
  8. Filing fee

What is a DR6?

A DR6 is a form that must be filed with your divorce papers. It is a “Statement of Assets Liabilities Income Expenses”. It covers all income, assets, and expenses.

Do I have to serve my spouse with divorce papers in an uncontested divorce in Rhode Island?

Yes. The spouse must be served by a local sheriff or constable. Normally, this will be handled by your lawyer’s office. A copy of the papers must also be filed with the sheriff’s office.

How long do I have to wait for a court date?

After the complaint is filed, the clerk will schedule a court date for approximately 75 days afterward. In some cases, the judge may waive the waiting period. To do this, both parties must sign a waiver stating there is no chance of reconciliation.

Is there a waiting period in Rhode Island?

Yes. If the grounds are “irreconcilable differences”, there is a waiting period of 90 days after your court appearance. If the grounds are living “separate and apart for at least 3 years” there is a 21-day waiting period.

What are the residency requirements to get a divorce in Rhode Island?

Rhode Island does have residency requirements that need to be met to file for divorce. The Rhode Island residency requirement states that either you or your spouse must prove that you’re a resident of the state and that either you or your spouse have resided in the state for at least one year before you can file for a divorce.

How is child support calculated?

Rhode Island has a set calculator based on income to determine child support obligations. It takes into account the amount each parent earns and the costs of child care and medical insurance.

What about school tuition?

If your child goes to a private school in Rhode Island, that is a matter settled out of court. In RI, a judge can’t order a spouse to pay tuition because it is an optional expense.

Do most divorcing couples get joint custody of children in Rhode Island?

Yes, provided both spouses are fit and proper parents. Joint custody refers to making major decisions about the child, like schooling and medical decisions. However, joint custody doesn’t necessarily mean that a child splits their time 50/50 between parents.

What is placement?

Placement means the child or children reside with one parent. The other parent receives all reasonable rights of visitation.

Do grandparents have rights in Rhode Island?

When children are involved, sometimes a divorce can get messy. Some parents might feel as though they don’t want their children to visit grandparents or relatives of their ex-spouse for a variety of reasons. However, in these cases, grandparents and relatives of the children can file a petition through the Rhode Island Family Court to have visitation rights with their grandchildren. Overall, the grandparents or relatives will have to prove to a judge that spending time with the children is in their best interest. 

Should I ask for alimony?

In Rhode Island, alimony is rarely awarded. If it is, it is usually only for a very short period of time.

How do I find a Rhode Island divorce lawyer?

Contact an experienced Rhode Island divorce lawyer here for a free consultation.

How long does it take for a divorce in Rhode Island?

Please check out How long does it take to get a divorce in Rhode Island?

Contacting Rhode Island Divorce Attorney Susan T. Perkins

The Law Office of Rhode Island Family Attorney Susan T. Perkins is open 24 Hours. If you’re ready to discuss your case, it’s recommended to contact the best divorce attorney in Rhode Island as soon as possible.

Rhode Island Family and Divorce Attorney Susan T. Perkins provide representation throughout Rhode Island including Warwick, Portsmouth, Providence, Cranston, Newport, Scituate, Central Falls, Woonsocket, Portsmouth, North Smithfield, Narragansett, Tiverton, Lincoln, and surrounding cities.

To know more information about divorce forms, divorce mediation, marital assets, spousal support, divorce proceeding, restraining order, or any other related information to your legal matter. Call Rhode Island Divorce Attorney Susan T. Perkins to schedule a free consultation to discuss your family law matter.

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Susan T. Perkins is a family law attorney and also practices criminal law in RI, MA, and CI.

If you need legal advice about your divorce call the Law Office of Susan T. Perkins, Esq. at (401) 324-2990 to schedule a Free Consultation.