Understanding Temporary Orders in a Divorce Case

temporary orders

In most cases, a divorce case can take several months or even years to conclude. As a result, the two parties involved in the process may be forced to decide how parenting time and financial matters will be handled for as long as the case remains pending.

If the two spouses cannot reach a mutual agreement on these matters, the issues will then be put before court for a temporary order hearing. One of the spouses may feel that he/she is better placed to handle some things during the divorce.

This post intends to provide you with everything you need to know about temporary charges in a divorce case. So, let us get started.

What Are Temporary Orders in a Divorce Case?

Temporary orders are issued by a family court and provide a way for the divorcing couples to address some of the sticky issues before a formal divorce settlement is reached. Some of the issues that can be addressed by temporary orders include spousal support, child custody, possession of the marital home, health insurance, etc.

Temporary orders can help you and your spouse navigate any unclear areas of your separation while the legal process is still in progress.

divorce case

Divorce cases can take months or even years to conclude, which is why temporary orders are critical, especially for couples who have kids and want an ideal parenting plan to implement immediately.

These orders are specifically designed to maintain the status quo the parties to a divorce case might have held while together.  However, they can also be issued as a matter of fairness or to protect the best interest of the children involved.

When Do You Need to Seek Temporary Orders in a Divorce Case?

Most of us know that the legal process can take months or even years to conclude. During that time, you still need to figure out how to handle shared parenting, financial obligations, and splitting properties.

For instance, if one spouse usually cares for the kids as their primary occupation, you may be forced to develop a new parenting plan that allows the other parent to spend some time with the children.

On the other hand, the non-working spouse may need financial support or find a job and choose a childcare facility to look after the children during their work hours.

Typically, these types of issues must be handled urgently since they can’t wait until the time when the divorce is finalized.  Therefore, the family court must issue official orders on how the matters will be handled. The temporary orders provide legally-binding guidelines for spouses to follow while handling such issues.

Seeking temporary orders usually requires help from an experienced divorce attorney who will explain how to progress with the matter. Filing for the order requires you to complete numerous paperwork specifying your concerns.

Some states even have specific forms for different temporary order issues.

Importance of Temporary Orders for Child Custody

Some couples can sit down and agree on crucial things on their own. If you find yourself in such a situation, that will be great since it will save you from the hassle of filing for temporary orders. Just make sure you write down everything you agree on and sign it so that there is no doubt about it in the future.

However, if you and your spouse cannot agree on crucial issues, like many couples going through a divorce, make sure you immediately seek temporary orders. This is especially important when it comes to child custody.

If you are planning to maintain custody of your kids, especially if you want to take them away from home, it is critical to file for temporary orders pertaining to child custody as soon as possible.

temporary orders

If you don’t, your partner could try to file a kidnapping claim against you, which could work in their favor quite easily. Judges and the police take kidnapping claims seriously, and it could still haunt you later when the judge is issuing permanent orders.

However, if you file for child custody temporary orders and your partner files a kidnapping claim against you, the judge will see the child custody request and drop the kidnapping claim.

Can Temporary Orders Influence Permanent Orders?

You might be wondering whether temporary orders can influence permanent orders, right? Even though temporary orders don’t automatically influence the outcome of the divorce case, they usually set a precedent that the judge may refer to when issuing the final verdict.

In a divorce case, temporary orders are especially critical when trying to anticipate final alimony or child support payments. Unless there is a dramatic shift in the earnings of one or both spouses, the amount of child support issued in temporary orders will most likely remain the same.

Therefore, if your divorce case involves temporary orders for spousal or child support, you will have a good idea of what to expect and how to deal with the situation once it becomes a permanent order.

If you think that whatever you receive under temporary orders doesn’t work well for you and you want to request a change from the court, make sure you talk to your divorce attorney as soon as possible.

Keep in mind that just because temporary orders are non-permanent, they are  not easy to change. Once temporary orders have been issued, it takes a lot of convincing and justification to change anything.

Do All Divorce Cases Involve Temporary Orders?

Not every divorce case involves the issuance of temporary orders. In fact, temporary orders are only necessary if the divorcing parties can’t agree on pertinent issues. Spouses can reach a mutual agreement on their own without involving the court.

The advantage of seeking temporary orders is that it helps bring stability to a difficult situation. In some cases, temporary orders can stay in place for relatively long periods.


If there are no children involved in the divorce and parties can agree on a plan to separate amicably, it is possible to forgo temporary orders. In such a case, the parties can proceed to trial without the need for any temporary order.

Legal Help from a Divorce Attorney You Can Trust

The divorce process can be complicated, but having an experienced divorce attorney by your side can make things a little bit easier and help you get the best results out of your case.

Our team of experienced divorce attorneys is here to help you file all the necessary pleadings needed to seek a temporary order during your divorce.  Contact us today for an initial consultation!

Facebook Comments

Leave a Comment

Scroll to Top