Massachusetts & New Hampshire Family Law Attorneys


Massachusetts Divorce Attorneys

At Socci & Nieves Family Law Group, our goal is to amicably resolve as many issues in your divorce as possible. Some issues, depending on the parties, can be addressed and resolved quickly and easily.  Of course, we recognize that in most divorces, not every issue will be easily resolved by agreement.  When a divorce case cannot be solved in its entirety, by agreement, the parties will have to seek Court intervention.  We understand how critically important the litigation process is when it comes to ensuring that the disputed issues are fully and properly resolved. Many different issues need to be resolved during a divorce, such as child custody, parenting plan, alimony, child support and division of assets, to name a few.  We will not only fight vigorously in court, should your case require it, but we are also committed to explaining the process every step of the way.

selective focus of couple sitting at table with divorce documents

Understanding Divorce

Who can file for divorce?

There are two ways you can be permitted to file for a divorce in Massachusetts:

You have resided in Massachusetts for at least one (1) year; OR

The cause of your divorce occurred in Massachusetts and you have lived in the Commonwealth as a couple.

What are the steps to file for a no-fault divorce?

When you file a no-fault divorce in Massachusetts you cite an “irretrievable breakdown of the marriage” as grounds for divorce.  In most cases, a party will file a no-fault divorce.  An action for a no-fault divorce in the Commonwealth can be commenced pursuant to Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 208, Section 1A (an uncontested divorce) or Section 1B (a contested divorce).

Steps to obtain a 1A divorce in Massachusetts
  • Determine if you are eligible to get divorced in Massachusetts
  • Draft and sign a comprehensive Separation Agreement
  • Provide the necessary Court forms, including but not limited to a certified copy of your Marriage Certificate
  • File your Separation Agreement, the necessary Court’s forms, and pay the filing fee.
  • Attend the hearing for the Court to review and approve your Separation Agreement. Upon approval, the Court will enter a Judgment of Divorce Nisi.

The divorce is finalized 120 days from the date of the divorce hearing.

Steps to obtain a 1B divorce in Massachusetts
  • Determine if you are eligible to get divorced in Massachusetts
  • Fill out and file the required Court forms and pay the filing fees.
  • Serve your spouse with notice of the divorce action.
  • Exchange financial statements and other financial disclosures.
  • Attend a Pre-Trial Conference in the matter.
  • Attend a final hearing.
    • Any final hearing that is scheduled in the matter cannot be heard before the matter has been pending for six (6) months.

Grounds for a fault divorce?

In a fault divorce, a party asks the Court to grant a divorce for a specific reason. In Massachusetts, the grounds for a fault divorce are:

  • Adultery
  • Desertion
  • Gross and confirmed habits of intoxication
  • Cruel and abusive treatment
  • Non-support
  • Impotency
  • A prison sentence of five or more years
  • The fault divorce process can take longer than the no-fault divorce process because the responding party can contest and attempt to rebut the filing party’s reason for divorce.

Role of Divorce Attorney

The primary role of a divorce attorney is to advocate on the behalf of their client for a fair resolution of the matter and to protect the client’s rights.  In addition, a divorce attorney counsels the client on the law and guides the client through the divorce process.

Benefits to Working with Socci & Nieves for Divorce

Our Massachusetts Divorce Attorneys are experienced, knowledgable, and a skilled representation

Provide education to the client throughout the divorce process

Experience with complex and high net worth estates, as well as asset valuation and asset division in a divorce

Understanding of complex compensation packages and income streams (self-employment, partnerships, trusts, etc.)

Litigation experience to conduct and obtain discovery to ensure all assets have been disclosed and accounted for in the divorce

Ability to draft and negotiate complex Separation Agreements

Disclaimer: In accordance with rules established by the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, this website must be labeled "advertising." It is designed to provide general information for clients and friends of the firm and should not be construed as legal advice, or legal opinion on any specific facts or circumstances. This website is designed for general information only. The information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice or the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.