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Benefits of 
an online divorce

Benefits of an online divorce

Why Choose Divorce.com?

Divorce.com is a reliable resource for preparing court-required documents to file for an amicable divorce, where both parties agree on the divorce terms. Using this platform, the spouses can get the necessary paperwork without leaving home or hiring an expensive attorney.

Working on divorce papers with Divorce.com is very simple since the system automatically customizes all the forms, according to the state standards and the circumstances of each divorce case. The process is quick and doesn’t require any legal background.

The typical steps each client will take include:

  • Answering the questionnaire and providing information that will be used to fill out the forms.
  • Checking and correcting the answers as many times as needed before submitting them.
  • Downloading the documents in a PDF format and filing them with the court using the filing guide from Divorce.com.

Divorce.com is your ultimate choice for fast and easy divorce documents!

Missouri divorce forms

Missouri Divorce Forms

Filing for divorce in Missouri starts with collecting and filling out the court-required papers. Some of them may be found using the official resources, such as libraries and self-help sections on the state’s official websites.

The basic documents include:

  • Petition for Dissolution of Marriage (Form CAFC001)
  • Statement of Property and Debt and Proposed Separation Agreement (Form CAFC040)
  • Statement of Income and Expenses (Form CAFC050)
  • Filing Information Sheet
  • Presumed Child Support Amount Worksheet (Form 14)
  • Certificate of Dissolution of Marriage
  • Respondent’s Answer to Petition for Dissolution of Marriage (Form CAFC010-R)
  • Entry of Appearance and Waiver of Service
  • Acknowledgment of Service by Mail (Form 4B or 4C)
  • Decree of Dissolution of Marriage (Form CAFC070)
  • Parenting Plan (Form CAFC501)
  • Notice of Hearing (Form CAFC721)
  • Motion in Support of Request to Proceed As a Poor Person

Depending on the circumstances, some forms may be unnecessary to start divorce proceedings. For example, spouses without kids don’t need to file a parenting plan or a presumed child support amount worksheet.

Divorce forms preparation

Divorce forms preparation

How to Fill Out Divorce Forms in Missouri

Once the spouses obtain the blank divorce forms, they must fill them out and avoid mistakes as much as possible. Here are several helpful tips to accomplish this task:

  • Read the questions and all information on the forms carefully.
  • Consult legal dictionaries and Missouri Revised Statutes to clarify unknown terms.
  • Collect the required information, such as the date of marriage and separation, each party’s address and social security number, etc.
  • Discuss all the terms with the spouse before filling out the forms.
  • Complete the blank spaces and check the boxes where needed.
  • Do not include the entire accounts / social security numbers anywhere (typically, only 4 last digits).
  • Review the information you’ve provided.
  • Sign the papers (notarize if necessary) and file them with the local court.

If a petition or other papers contain errors, the court clerk will reject them. That’s why it’s important to collect all the forms and fill them out correctly, which is not always an easy path.

Luckily, all couples with amicable divorces can use Divorce.com to get accurate paperwork with accompanying filing instructions. This service is simple and convenient since all the work is done online.

The process of getting the forms consists of two key stages: answering the questionnaire and waiting two business days for the completed papers. After that, you’re equipped to file for divorce.

Filing for
Divorce in
Missouri

Steps to Consider

Residency Requirements

Missouri courts can’t dissolve a marriage if they don’t have jurisdiction over the case. It can only be established if a couple meets the residency requirements.

Family law says that to file for divorce in Missouri, one of the spouses must have lived within the state limits for 90 days before starting the divorce proceedings.

If one of the parties serves in the military, they must be stationed in Missouri for 90 days before filing for divorce.

Grounds for Divorce

Missouri law provides only one no-fault reason for divorce. It’s called an irretrievable breakdown of the marriage and means there is no chance for reconciliation.

To use no-fault grounds, both spouses must agree that their marriage is irretrievably broken. Another option is when one spouse alleges it is irretrievably broken and the other doesn’t deny it. Otherwise, the petitioner must prove that the marriage is no longer viable using one of the following:

  • adultery
  • separation
  • abandonment
  • deviant behavior
Initial Filing

Divorces in Missouri are handled by family court, which is a subdivision of circuit court. The spouse initiating a divorce must collect and fill out the divorce forms and bring them to the court situated in the county where the wife or the husband lives.

The initial papers include the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, Summons, Filing Information Sheet, and other documents.

Two copies of each form should accompany the packet of original papers.

Filing Fees

Filing fees in Missouri vary between the counties, from $130-$150. If a person can’t afford to pay the filing fee, they can ask the court to waive this payment.

To apply for the waiver, a person must file a Motion and Affidavit in Support of Request to Proceed As a Poor Person.

The form contains questions about the person’s financial situation, such as monthly income, expenses, total assets, and debts. It will help the judge decide whether to waive the court fees.

Serving the Respondent

The next step after filing the petition and other papers is to notify the respondent. Again, it’s essential to use the correct method, or the case may be dismissed.

The Missouri court rules allow one of the following ways:

  • by waiver of personal service from a respondent where they need to sign the Entry of Appearance and Waiver of Service form
  • personal service by a sheriff
  • by a private process server
  • by publication
Waiting Period

At least 30 days must pass between the date a petitioner filed the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage and the hearing where a judge will issue a divorce decree.

This period is also used for a respondent to file the answer. In addition, the couple must attend a parenting class and the litigant awareness program if they plan to proceed without lawyers.

After the waiting period ends, the petitioner can ask to schedule a court hearing.

Finalizing a Divorce Case

Depending on the county court rules, the spouses must go through a settlement conference or case management before scheduling the final hearing.

Again, some circuit courts put the case on the docket automatically, whereas others require a request from a petitioner.

Both parties must appear in the courthouse on the assigned date and present their case and supporting evidence to the judge. The dissolution becomes final 30 days after the judge issues the final judgment.

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Uncontested divorce 
in Missouri

Uncontested Divorce in Missouri

An uncontested divorce is a peaceful alternative to traditional litigation, allowing couples to avoid court trials. Anyone can use this method if they resolve their disputes before filing their petition. They must agree on property division, child custody, child support, and alimony.

The spouses will still need to conclude a mutual settlement agreement and go to court because the judge must ensure that the terms of this agreement comply with the following requirements:

  • it’s completed in good faith and respects the rights and obligations of all parties
  • child-related arrangements adhere to the child’s best interests
  • property, such as real estate, assets, and debts, is divided according to the state’s “equitable distribution” principle.

Using Divorce.com, couples with an amicable divorce can obtain their paperwork without wasting time or money. Our service will promptly generate all the legal papers to start a divorce in Missouri.

Child custody

Getting a Divorce with Children in Missouri

Child custody

Any divorce case with minor children must address child custody issues. The parents can submit a proposed parenting plan jointly or separately with custody arrangements, visitation, and residential time.

Missouri family law has several options for child custody:

  • Sole physical custody, where a child permanently lives with a primary custodial parent.
  • Sole legal custody, where only one parent decides how to raise the child.
  • Joint physical custody, where the kids live with each parent according to a residential schedule.
  • Joint legal custody, where the parents have equal decision-making rights.

Missouri judges are more inclined to order joint custody to ensure the child’s frequent contact with both parents. However, if one parent is guilty of any offense where children were victims, they won’t get custody rights.

The judge will also consider other relevant factors, such as:

  • the parents’ ability and willingness to ensure the child’s frequent contact with the other parent;
  • the child’s relationships with parents, siblings, and other relatives;
  • the health of all individuals involved;
  • the history of abuse, etc.
Child Support

Child Support

Missouri courts calculate the child support obligation using the Income Shares Model. The state guidelines have a detailed table based on the parents’ combined income and the number of children.

The payment will terminate when a child reaches 18, becomes emancipated, self-supporting, or dies. However, if a child reaches 18 and is still enrolled in a secondary school, support will continue until graduation or the age of 21. Additionally, if they are disabled, the court can extend financial payments.

The factors that might influence the child support amount are:

  • the parents’ and child’s financial needs and resources;
  • the standard of living before the divorce;
  • the child’s physical and emotional state;
  • educational and medical needs, etc.

The court orders can also include the provision for the parent receiving support to provide an expenses report regularly.

Divorce Without a Lawyer in Missouri

Divorce Without
a Lawyer
in Missouri

Under Missouri state laws, each person can represent themselves in court without a divorce lawyer. However, this DIY method is not an excellent idea if the divorce is contested and will go to trial.

But they can safely proceed without legal representation when their divorce is amicable. Since the average lawyers’ fees are $200-$350 an hour, depending on the law firm, the couple will save thousands of dollars.

Collecting and completing the forms can be tricky and time-consuming. Plus, there’s no guarantee a person won’t make any errors or forget to bring some documents. As a result, it will make the process longer and more stressful.

If you want to avoid the hassle of paperwork preparation, you can use Divorce.com. This platform will select the correct forms required for an uncontested divorce in Missouri and fill them out according to your circumstances.

Divorce.com is a fast and inexpensive way to get the correct paperwork without leaving home. The service also sends step-by-step instructions to clients to guide them through filing. Then, just download and print the packet of papers, and you’re ready to sign and file them.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long will it take to get divorced in Missouri?

Thirty days is the shortest period that an uncontested divorce might take. Contested cases last from six to twelve months on average.

Can I get a free divorce in Missouri?

The court rules allow the petitioners unable to pay the filing fees to request a fee waiver. The appropriate form is a Motion and Affidavit in Support of Request to Proceed As a Poor Person.

How do I file for divorce in Missouri?

A filing spouse must prepare legal documents, such as a Petition for Dissolution and Filing Information Sheet, and give them to the Clerk of the Family Court where either spouse lives.

How much does a divorce cost in Missouri?

A typical divorce in Missouri costs approximately $13,500. However, if you want to decrease your divorce expenses, you can use Divorce.com and only pay for the paperwork.