Filing a No-Fault Divorce
No matter what state you live in, the first thing you need in order to file for a no-fault divorce is the proper paperwork applicable to the jurisdiction you live in. All the states have different rules, requirements, and paperwork concerning filing for a divorce. Despite the fact that documents from different states may seem basically similar, your paperwork will not be accepted by your County Clerk if they are not the exact documents required and are completed correctly for the specific jurisdiction in which you are filing. Just like state divorce laws, divorce paperwork also varies by state, and sometimes even county.
If you live in a state with no fault divorce and your spilt is a fairly uncomplicated affair without a big estate to divide or several children to deal with, you can probably obtain the documents you need online. You can gather and prepare your own divorce filing forms with the assistance of an online divorce form service in most states today. If your divorce is shaping up to be a bitter and complicated battle in court, perhaps it would be in your best interests to have a divorce attorney prepare your divorce filing forms. Along with the proper forms, divorce document services will provide instructions on how to file your forms so they are legal and comply with the particular requirements of the jurisdiction you live in.
Almost every jurisdiction will require proof that you have served your spouse with a copy of the divorce petition and that the papers were accepted. You can attempt to obtain proof of service by yourself or you can hire a process server. Proof of service can also be obtained using Certified and Return Receipt Requested mail. If all standard methods of service don’t work you may be able to publish a notice of the divorce petition in a local newspaper for a specified length of time. Obtaining court approved proof of service is critical to prevent delays in your divorce filing process.
When both spouses agree to end a marriage with no fault divorce they will need to provide individual financial statements along with the divorce petition. They will also need to sign a formal settlement agreement that specifies each spouse’s rights and the terms of all agreements concerning property, children and spousal support. The last step is signing the papers in front of a Notary Public. These steps need to be completed in all cases even if you are using a lawyer.
Don’t forget that in addition to dividing real estate, household property, vehicles, bank accounts, and any investments, the formal settlement agreement will also specify disposition of alimony, custody, visitation and child support.