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Find a happier ending at Divorce.comTM Save time, money, and stress, guided by the most experienced team in online divorce

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Benefits of 
an online divorce

Benefits of an online divorce

Why Choose Divorce.com?

Divorce.com is an online service that significantly simplifies preparations for an uncontested divorce. The website allows couples who can resolve disputes outside the court to obtain divorce documents in only two business days.

Divorce.com is also convenient to use, since the spouses can take all the initial steps without leaving home. The process is quick and doesn’t require much time or financial expenses.

The steps for getting the state-specific divorce papers are simple:

  • Pass a brief verification process that includes a few easy questions.
  • Complete the online questionnaire and provide information about your marriage, separation, and divorce.
  • Check your answers and correct them as many times as needed before submitting them.
  • Download the papers in a PDF format, ready in two business days.
  • Print, sign, and file the documents with the proper local court.

Divorce.com is your fast and hassle-free option to get divorce forms!

Delaware divorce forms

Delaware Divorce Forms

The blank forms to initiate a divorce in Delaware may be obtained at the online governmental resources in the self-help sections. The necessary documentation for each divorce case depends on the circumstances.

The basic mandatory forms to start a divorce in Delaware include the following:

  • Petition for Divorce/Annulment (Form 442)
  • Vital Statistics Sheet (Form 441 or Form 441SS)
  • Original or certified copy of a marriage/civil union certificate
  • Information Sheet (Form 240)
  • Request for Notice (Form 400)

Other situational forms are as follows:

  • Affidavit of Children’s Rights (Form 279)
  • Child Support Calculation (Form 509)
  • Separation Agreement
  • Stipulation to Incorporate Separation Agreement (Form 443)
  • Affidavit of Non-Military Service (Form 405)
  • Affidavit of Unknown Address (Form 241)
  • Waiver of Rights under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (Form 420)
  • Affidavit that a Party’s SSN is Unknown (Form 421)
  • Request and an Affidavit to Proceed without a Hearing (Forms 446 and 447)
  • Ancillary Financial Disclosure Report (Form 465)
  • Ancillary Pretrial Stipulation (Form 466)
  • Affidavit of Mailing (Form 850)
  • Affidavit of Appearance and Waiver of Rights (Form 263)
  • Ancillary Financial Disclosure Report (Form 449)
  • Affidavit in Support of Application to Proceed In Forma Pauperis (Form 257P)
Divorce forms preparation

Divorce forms preparation

How to Fill Out Divorce Forms in Delaware

After obtaining blank court forms, a person must fill them out. This task may seem overwhelming for those who haven’t dealt with divorce. However, some rules and tips can help you complete the paperwork without mistakes.

Here are the main steps:

  • Read the forms and make sure you understand legal terminology.
  • Look up all the unfamiliar terms and concepts in the Delaware Code.
  • Gather the required information regarding your marriage and divorce, such as the date of marriage, separation, and personal data of each party.
  • If divorce is amicable, negotiate the critical issues, such as property and children, with your husband or wife.
  • Fill out the forms using the gathered information and agreed terms.
  • Check the answers and sign the completed documents in front of a notary public before going to a courthouse.

Filling out the forms usually takes longer than a person thinks it would. In addition, there is a big chance of making mistakes, which can cause delays.

Luckily, spouses with amicable divorces can use a more straightforward way to get the paperwork by using Divorce.com. This service will generate all the court-required divorce forms and filing instructions in only two business days.

Thus, it’s a convenient alternative to hiring expensive divorce lawyers or spending hours on DIY paperwork alone.

Filing for
Divorce in
Delaware

Steps to Consider

Residency Requirements

Every couple seeking a divorce in Delaware must comply with the residency requirements. These are usually the number of days, months, etc., that a person must have lived in the state before filing a lawsuit. This way, the courts can establish jurisdiction over spouses, property, and children.

Under Delaware family laws, one spouse must have lived in the state for six consecutive months to file for divorce in this state.

Grounds for Divorce

Any divorce should have a legal reason (ground) that a petitioner states in the Petition for Divorce. Delaware law allows for no-fault divorce only, which is an “irretrievable breakdown” of a marriage.

However, the spouses may file for a no-fault divorce that was caused by misconduct, which must be proved with proper evidence in court:

  • adultery
  • cruel treatment and abuse
  • bigamy
  • alcohol or drug abuse
  • conviction of a crime and imprisonment
  • abandonment
Initial Filing

A petitioner (filing spouse) must prepare and file the appropriate forms with the court to start a divorce process. They can only choose between the family courts in the counties where either spouse lives.

The petitioner must bring the original papers and one copy of each form to the court and pay the filing fee. The mandatory forms include a Petition for Divorce/Annulment, an Information Sheet, a Vital Statistics Certificate of Divorce or Annulment, a copy or original Marriage Certificate, and a Request for Notice.

Filing Fees

A petitioner must pay the filing fee to the court clerk when submitting their divorce paperwork. The amount is approximately $165, but it might vary from county to county. If petitioners file in person, they can cover the court fees with cash, money order, or credit card.

Delaware courts may grant a fee waiver for spouses in difficult financial situations if they file an Affidavit in Support of Application to Proceed In Forma Pauperis.

Serving the Respondent

After a petitioner files the papers with the court, they must notify their spouse about the divorce by sending them copies of all forms and the Summons. The rules of civil procedure allow several ways to do it properly.

A service of process may be performed by:

  • a sheriff
  • certified mail
  • publication (if the respondent’s location is unknown)

A respondent can also waive the service of papers by signing the Affidavit of Appearance and Waiver of Rights form.

Waiting Period

Delaware courts require that the spouses have lived separately for six months before they can get a divorce. However, this requirement does not apply to couples filing on fault-based grounds, such as abuse, adultery, and desertion.

This waiting period allows a respondent to file the response papers if the divorce is contested. In addition, if the couple has minor children, they can attend parenting education classes before the end of these six months.

Finalizing a Divorce Case

When the waiting period is over, the case usually goes to trial. However, spouses with uncontested divorces may ask the court to proceed without a hearing and review the divorce terms on paper.

When they receive a notice that their petition is ready for trial, they must file a Request and an Affidavit to Proceed without a Hearing. If the court grants a divorce after reviewing all documents, the ex-spouses will receive a copy of the divorce decree in the mail.

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Stars

Divorce.com was a perfect choice for my uncontested divorce. I received the completed forms two days after answering the questionnaire and filed them the next day. The filing went smoothly, so I’m happy with the service.

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Uncontested divorce 
in Delaware

Uncontested Divorce in Delaware

An uncontested divorce is a marriage dissolution when the spouses resolve all of their disputes regarding critical terms. For example, if both parties agree on splitting the property and children, they can significantly lower their divorce expenses.

Getting an uncontested divorce is also a time-saving option. For instance, couples can avoid lengthy court trials by deciding the key issues in advance.

Spouses with some disputes who want to proceed with an uncontested divorce can get help from a divorce mediator. The terms they agree on during the mediation can be added to a mutual settlement agreement and incorporated into a final judgment.

The agreement should include these provisions:

  • property division (assets, debts, real estate, etc.)
  • child custody and support
  • alimony and insurance, etc.

Drafting the settlement agreement and other court-required paperwork is much easier with Divorce.com. This service will gather the packet of divorce forms and customize them in only two business days.

Child custody

Getting a Divorce with Children in Delaware

Child custody

A divorcing couple with minor children must decide how to split the custody rights or let the court resolve this issue if they cannot agree. Delaware judges have the following options to choose from when determining custody arrangements:

  • Joint (shared) legal custody. Both parents are responsible for making important decisions about the child’s education, health, religion, etc.
  • Sole legal custody. Only one parent decides on the child’s upbringing.
  • Joint residential placement. The child has frequent contact with each parent.
  • Sole residential placement. The child permanently lives with a primary residential parent and meets the other parent during visitation time.

The parents may decide the custody arrangements outside the court, for example, during mediation, and develop a Parenting Plan. They also must attend parenting education classes and file a certificate of completion with the family court.

If the parents cannot agree on how to divide custody, the judge will decide this issue after considering the following factors:

  • Each parent’s wishes;
  • The child’s wishes;
  • The child’s relationships with each parent, siblings, and other significant people that live in the household;
  • The child’s adjustments to school and community;
  • Each party’s mental and physical health;
  • Both parents’ compliance with their parental responsibilities;
  • The history of domestic violence, etc.
Child Support

Child Support

Each parent is responsible for providing for their minor children after divorce. This financial obligation is called child support. Delaware determines its amount by using a “Melson Formula,” a variation of the Income Shares Model in other states.

The formula found in the Child Support Calculation form includes the income from all sources and the number of children. In addition, parental time (overnights per year) and standard of living also affect the amount of support.

However, the judge may award a higher or lower amount, depending on the circumstances. For this reason, the parents must take the pay stubs and other documents to present at the hearing.

The support must cover the child’s basic needs, such as food, transportation, health care, and the cost of insurance. The duty to support the children ends when they:

  • turn 18 and are not enrolled in high school education
  • turn 19 if they are still attending high school.
Divorce Without a Lawyer in Delaware

Divorce Without
a Lawyer
in Delaware

Divorcing couples in Delaware don’t always need to spend thousands of dollars on lawyers and go through lengthy divorce trials. Instead, if both parties agree to all terms, Delaware state laws allow them to represent their case in court independently.

Proceeding as pro se litigants (without an attorney) is definitely beneficial for each spouse’s budget. Indeed, Delaware lawyers charge around $250 per hour for their services. In addition, the spouses can control the outcome of their divorce if they minimize court involvement by developing a settlement agreement.

Excluding the lawyers from the divorce process can, however, have a few drawbacks. One of them is the need to prepare court papers. Most of the time, it is complicated and requires a lot of time and nerves.

However, spouses now have a simple option for paperwork preparation - Divorce.com. It is an online service that assists couples in drafting legal papers for an uncontested divorce.

Divorce.com will generate the state-specific papers in only two business days and provide spouses with detailed filing instructions. It’s affordable, fast, and convenient.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long will it take to get divorced in Delaware?

The length of divorce in Delaware depends on the number of disputes between spouses. Contested cases take around 6-12 months on average.

Can I get a free divorce in Delaware?

Each petitioner must pay a filing fee of $165 to a district clerk to start a divorce in Delaware. If a person can’t afford the payment, they can get it waived by filing an Affidavit in Support of Application to Proceed In Forma Pauperis (Form 257P).

How do I file for divorce in Delaware?

To start a divorce in Delaware, a petitioner must complete and file a Petition for Divorce, Vital Statistics Form, and Information Sheet with the court in a county where either spouse lives.

How much does a divorce cost in Delaware?

The price tag of contested divorces may reach $10,000-$15,000. Uncontested divorces are less expensive, mainly if the spouses use online services, such as Divorce.com, to prepare the paperwork.