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If you and your spouse have an uncontested divorce and agree on all issues, put the terms of the divorce in writing and submit it to the court where the original divorce petition was filed. An informal hearing typically is the next step. A judge will ask you fact-based questions about the agreement to confirm each party has a sound understanding of the settlement and agrees to its terms. If the judge is satisfied with your answers and considers the agreement to be fair and balanced, the likelihood for receiving court approval is high.
A judge needs to provide official approval of any marital settlement agreement. Once approval is granted, the judge gives the parting couple a divorce decree. This is a document that legally recognizes the divorce is final and outlines next steps, including:
division of marital property and debt,
child custody and management,
child support, and
You may need to renegotiate if the judge doesn’t approve one or more terms of the settlement agreement. If the couple cannot make an agreement that satisfies the court and the divorce becomes contested, the case will go to trial and an official decree will be made by a judge.