How To File for Divorce—Untie the Knot Fast
Getting an uncontested divorce is usually straightforward. Since both parties agree on everything, you won’t have to waste time on endless court hearings.
Still, you have to figure out how to file for divorce, gather the necessary papers, draft a divorce settlement agreement, and not spend big bucks in the process.
DoNotPay is here to help!
If you and your spouse believe that divorce is the only solution, you should commence the process. One of you needs to file a legal petition asking the court to end the marriage. The petition should contain this information:
- A legal reason for the divorce
- A statement that at least one spouse meets the state residency requirements for divorce
- Any other statutory information that the state you live in requires
You also need to fulfill the residency requirements, but they are not the same in all states. The rules usually require one spouse to live in the state where the divorce gets filed for between three and 12 months. Counties are less strict—generally, you need to be a resident between ten days and six months before filing the petition.
Check out the table below for specific divorce laws in each state:
Once you are certain that you meet the residency requirements for your state, you can continue with the steps for filing for divorce. Take a look at the table below for more information:
|Steps To Take||Brief Explanation|
|Fill out your court forms||The court forms you need to complete usually require you to provide information about:
|Make copies of your forms (at least two)||You will need one copy for yourself and another for your spouse, and the original will go to the court|
|File the papers||You need to file the divorce papers in the state court in the county where you or your spouse resides|
|Create a divorce settlement agreement||This document is a necessity for uncontested divorce cases. When properly drafted, it covers custody arrangements and ways to divide property and debts. DoNotPay can help you create an airtight divorce settlement agreement!|
If you are willing to have a friendly divorce with your spouse, turn to DoNotPay for help.
We can help you have an out-of-court divorce settlement. Our app will assist you with one of the crucial steps of the process—creating a settlement agreement!
You don’t need to spend a small fortune on lawyers or waste time making the document on your own. To get a settlement agreement tailored to your specific needs, follow these steps:
- Sign up for DoNotPay in a web browser
- Type in Divorce Settlement Agreement in the search bar
- Answer a few questions about your spouse and children
- Provide us with some information about your income
You only need to sign the document and get it notarized after completing these steps. DoNotPay can help you with the notarization part as well!
State courts have the power of jurisdiction over divorce matters. Depending on the state you live in, you can file a divorce petition with:
- Your state court in the county of the state’s circuit
- A superior court
In some cases and certain states, you are allowed to file for divorce online.
The best course of action is to check with your local county or district branch of the court in your state and find out where you should file for divorce.
It doesn't matter who the first to file the divorce papers is. The court does not provide the petitioner (the person filing for divorce) with any advantage over the respondent.
You need to file a divorce petition with the local court and make sure that your spouse receives copies of the divorce papers—this is called serving the papers to your spouse and is a must in all states. If you skip this step, the court won’t be able to issue any orders and will dismiss your case.
The majority of states do not allow you to deliver the papers to your spouse personally—there needs to be a third person who will handle the task. This individual is usually a county sheriff, friend, relative, or professional.
Sometimes, it is possible for the spouse to accept the complaint and summons by mail. In this case, you will need to mail them an additional document called Notice of Acknowledgement and Receipt (NOA). The spouse should complete, sign, and return this document to the server.
If you are curious about how the divorce process works, you can turn to DoNotPay for help. Our app has answers to questions, such as:
- How much does a divorce cost?
- What is mediation in divorce?
- Can you get a divorce without going to court?
- How can you get a divorce without a lawyer?
- Do you need a divorce lawyer even if you agree on everything with your spouse?
- What should you know about uncontested divorce papers?
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