This is one of the first questions that I am asked by a new client. The answer usually depends on several factors. Two of these will generally have the greatest impact on your divorce.
First, what type of divorce are you seeking? If you are seeking a divorce based on irreconcilable differences, there is a minimum statutory waiting period. This is basically a cooling off period that starts to run when the complaint is filed with the court. If the couple has an unmarried minor child, the waiting period is 90 days. If there are no children, the waiting period is 60 days. In order to get a divorce based on irreconcilable differences, both husband and wife have to agree on all aspects of the divorce.
If you are seeking a divorce based on grounds other than irreconcilable differences, there is generally no statutory waiting period. However a contested divorce by its very nature takes time and money. Contested divorces can take years.
The second major factor is the ability of you and your spouse to agree on issues. If the couple can compromise on issues such as property division and child custody, the divorce can proceed much faster (and can be much less expensive). It is always wise to find out early in the process what issues can be agreed on and to concentrate on the areas where there is disagreement.