Kendall Summers Attorney at Law

Contested Divorce

When the two parties to the marriage do not agree to divorce, or do not agree to the “terms” of divorce, then the divorce becomes “contested.” Maryland Courts label divorce cases “contested” when not all issues in the case have been resolved. It means that the case is in the process of going to a trial before a Judge where some if not all unresolved issues will be determined after evidence is taken by a Judgment of the Court.

At the Law Office of Kendall Summers we aggressively pursue litigation for our clients in contested cases, taking all means to protect our client’s rights and to assist them in making informed and good judgments about their case. Our client’s receive personal, comprehensive and strategically advantageous legal advice to guide them through each step of the “contested” divorce case process.

Divorce cases are heard by the Circuit Courts of Maryland which are governed by the Maryland Rules of Procedure. Divorce cases are scheduled by circuit court administrators to be complete with a final judgment within one year of filing, whenever possible. This means that divorce cases move at a pretty fast pace as compared with other kinds of court cases. The cases begin with the filing and serving of pleadings (meaning a complaint and answer) which set forth the claims being asserted, and then move into a phase called discovery during which the parties, for example, may request documents and things from the other party, require a party to give testimony by deposition, require the other party to answer questions in the form of Interrogatories, and where testimony and documents and things may be requested of third party witnesses. Depending on the case, discovery can be a very important and involved process. At the Law Office of Kendall Summers, discovery is pursued aggressively based on the needs of each client and case. In divorce cases, the Circuit Court will usually hold a scheduling conference where the parties must be present and where the schedule for the case is set. Where child custody, support, or other issues need to be addressed by the court preliminarily for purposes of the time while the case is in court, the Court will hold a Hearing Pendente Lite, meaning a hearing to set forth such terms as are necessary during the “pendency of the litigation.” After discovery is closed, the court usually orders a Pre-Trial Hearing (also known as a Settlement Conference) to see if the parties cannot with some help settle the case. If the case does not settle, then it goes to full trial before a Judge. A divorce trial is governed by the same rules as other civil cases, and follows the same trial format of Opening statements, bringing of evidence including witnesses and testimony, closing arguments and a final judgment by the court. There are no juries in divorce cases. Divorce cases are heard and decided by a Judge. In the Anne Arundel County Circuit Court notice becomes publicly available of the of the judge who will hear a case on the afternoon before the case is scheduled. This means that parties cannot choose their judge, but the judge selection is random and unknown until the day before trial.

Do you need an experienced Divorce attorney to handle your contested divorce trial? Call the Law Office of Kendall Summers for an experienced, aggressive, knowledgeable trial attorney who will fight for your case and your rights! Call today!

With over 25 years of experience, attorney Kendall Summers knows how to handle your divorce case. Call the Law Office of Kendall Summers to schedule your Initial Consult to hear advice from counsel about how to proceed to protect your rights through the legal process available in the Maryland Courts. The Law Office of Kendall Summer is a respected litigator in Anne Arundel County and surrounding counties of Maryland.