Temporary Matters and Pre-Trial Conferences in Iowa Divorce Proceedings
Two issues that come up fairly early in your dissolution case are temporary orders and the pre-trial conference requirement. This article discusses how these work.
When you file for divorce in Iowa, you ask the Judge to order certain things like child custody, both legal which is normally joint and physical which may be Primary for one party and visitation for the other or Joint shared which is the modern trend, Child Support, maybe spousal support, etc. There is a 90 day waiting period until the Judge can issue the final order, so if you need something right now, like temporary child support, and your spouse is not willing to pay it voluntarily, you may want your Des Moines divorce attorneys to file for temporary orders. See Jeff's Iowa Child Custody and Support page.
Temporary matters are handled here in Iowa by affidavit prepared with the assistance of divorce attorneys as opposed to live testimony before the court. These affidavits must be prepared by Iowa attorneys with care and take considerable time. Temporary matters also require mediation as with other disputed matters. This means divorce attorneys are required to hire a mediator on the clients behalf at client expense. Depending on how long a mediation takes an average case may require between $500 and $1,500 in mediator fees.
Here in Polk County, Des Moines divorce attorneys file your temporary matters online via Iowa Courts e-filing. So we are able to often reduce trips to the courthouse, saving time.
Pre Trial Conference
Most Iowa courts require a pre-trial conference on your family law matter. For some reason, they often set it at 90 days from the date of filing of the petition. Since there is a 90 day waiting period from the date of service or acceptance of service by the respondent, this means divorce attorneys usually cannot get a signed final order from the Judge until just after the pre-trial conference. The court will usually waive the PTC if both parties are represented by counsel and are in compliance with filing requirements of documents like financial affidavits, child support worksheet and children in the middle certificates.
If either party is not represented by counsel, than the divorce attorneys are required to attend. At the PTC, the Judge will review the progress of the case and make sure the parties are in compliance with filing deadlines. If they are not, the Judge may give the parties more time to get in compliance. If there are matters in dispute, the Judge will want to establish what they are and confirm that the parties have scheduled or will schedule mediation. Des Moines divorce attorneys like Jeff Mathias are accustomed to handling your PTC for you so that you normally are not required to personally attend.
Jeff's office is located at 4800 Mills Civic Pkwy, Ste. 218, in West Des Moines, Iowa 50265 . Tel. 515-261-7526, Toll Free 1-800-997-1395. Call or email Jeff any time for a fast response!