When and how do I seek divorce attorney’s fees in Florida?

A request for attorney’s fees should be made in the original petition or a responsive pleading. A financial affidavit must be filed by the party requesting the fees. The request for fees should base entitlement on allegations in the pleadings. Attorney’s fees may also be awarded through consent. If a party is made aware that the opposing party has requested attorney’s fees and does not reject the claim, or otherwise acknowledges the claim as legitimate, that party forfeits his/her ability to deny attorney’s fees. Often, in Palm Beach County divorce cases, the parties will negotiate and agree upon both temporary and final attorney’s fee awards when one spouse is in a superior financial position as compared to the other spouse. Prior to any enforcement proceeding, the party must again request fees through a pleading or he/she may be denied the award. The trial court may maintain a party’s claim for fees after the final judgment by reserving jurisdiction.

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