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Benefits of 
an online divorce

Benefits of an online divorce

Why Choose provides divorcing couples with a convenient opportunity to draft all legal paperwork for their uncontested divorce without hiring expensive attorneys. In addition, our online service will prepare detailed filing instructions to help spouses easily file their papers.

By choosing for court forms preparation, you will significantly decrease your divorce expenses and save time for more important tasks.

To obtain the forms and filing instructions, you will need to take a few simple steps:

  • Answer a few questions to ensure you can use our service (for uncontested divorces only).
  • After the brief verification, answer a series of questions about your divorce to help us select and fill out your forms.
  • Download completed documents, prepared in a PDF format, in two business days.
  • Print and notarize the papers before going to the local court.

Get your forms from and avoid unnecessary stress!

Washington D.C. divorce forms

Washington D.C. Divorce Forms

Filing for divorce in D.C. starts when a petitioner (a person requesting a divorce) files court-required papers, such as the Complaint for Divorce. Thus, the first step is to obtain blank forms that apply to the person’s circumstances.

Some divorce documents are located on the official state resources online. Others can only be obtained from the district clerk’s office.

The basic forms include:

  • Complaint for Absolute Divorce
  • Confidential Information Form
  • Cross Reference Intake Form
  • Uncontested Praecipe
  • Consent Answer to Complaint for Absolute Divorce
  • Affidavit of Service by Certified Mail
  • Affidavit of Service by Individual
  • Proof of Service Form
  • Motion to Serve by Publication or Posting
  • Notice and Acknowledgment of Service
  • Notice to Appear in Person
  • Application to Proceed Without Prepayment of Costs
  • Divorce Attachment A (Marital Property and/or Marital Debt)
  • Motion for Temporary Custody and Access to Children
  • Attachment B (Child Custody)
  • Attachment C (Child Support)
  • Parenting Plan
  • Joint Request for Uncontested Divorce Hearing
  • Proposed Order
  • Joint Waiver of Appeal
  • Judgment of Absolute Divorce
Divorce forms preparation

Divorce forms preparation

How to Fill Out Divorce Forms in Washington D.C.

Finding blank court forms is only the first step in starting a divorce. Filling them out is another important task. If the paperwork contains errors, the court clerk will not accept the filing. Thus, here are a few simple tips on how to accomplish this step without mistakes:

  • Read the forms and accompanying instructions for some fields and questions.
  • Ensure that you understand all terms. If not, consult a legal dictionary and the Code of the District of Columbia.
  • Collect necessary information, such as the marriage and separation dates, each party’s contact information, etc.
  • Discuss essentials with your husband or wife. You can develop and sign a settlement agreement if your divorce is amicable.
  • Complete the blanks and tick the boxes where necessary.
  • Check your answers and correct mistakes.
  • Notarize the forms with a specific section (usually at the end of the document).

Couples with DIY divorces can avoid spending hours of their precious time on this tedious paperwork. Instead, they can use our quick and trustworthy online service -

By preparing for divorce with, you can save many hours and money and speed up the divorce process. Your only task will be to answer our online questionnaire to help us select and fill out your forms. We’ll also send you detailed filing instructions. And all of it will only take two business days.

Filing for
Divorce in
Washington D.C.

Steps to Consider

Residency Requirements

Washington D.C. courts only allow spouses to file for divorce in this state if they meet residency requirements. It means they must be state residents for a defined period, depending on circumstances.

This way, the courts establish jurisdiction to grant divorce and rule on the property, children, and other matters.

Spouses can file for divorce in D.C. if one has lived or been stationed as a military member in this state for 6 months before the filing.

Grounds for Divorce

Spouses filing for divorce in Washington D.C., must indicate a reason for this action in their divorce complaint. They are referred to as legal grounds.

Essentially, there are only two no-fault grounds for dissolution in D.C.:

  • the spouses mutually agreed to live separately and apart for six months before the filing;
  • the spouses have lived separately for one year, and there was no agreement about it, e.g., one spouse was against it.

The state laws do not provide any fault grounds for divorce.

Initial Filing

The divorce process officially begins when a plaintiff (petitioner) gathers specific forms, fills them out with the required information, and takes them to the family court. The documents vary depending on the petitioner’s circumstances.

The most basic forms are the Complaint for Divorce, Uncontested Praecipe, and Cross-Reference Intake Form. The petitioner must file the original of these papers and several others and make two copies. One copy will be sent to the respondent together with the Summons.

Filing Fees

Each person filing a divorce complaint or a counterclaim in a divorce case must pay the filing fee. A complaint costs $80 while submitting a counterclaim is cheaper - only $20.

Nevertheless, if a person can prove that paying these court fees will create financial hardship for them or their families, they can ask a judge to waive this payment. To request the waiver, the petitioner must fill out and file Form 106A: Application to Proceed Without Prepayment of Costs.

Serving the Respondent

A plaintiff must ensure that the other party (spouse) receives the notice of divorce and copies of the Complaint and other initial papers. The court rules forbid the filing spouse to give the documents directly to the defendant.

The plaintiff can ask a third party (older 18) to give copies of papers and Summons to their spouse or ask to appoint a United States marshal to do the same. They have 60 days to file the proof of service or the acknowledgment of service.

Waiting Period

Spouses filing for divorce in Washington D.C., are not officially divorced until the waiting period passes. Under state laws, the couples must wait for 30 days after a judge issues a final decree. This period can be used to file an appeal.

However, there is a way to waive this requirement if both parties agree not to appeal the court’s decisions about the divorce. They must also file a Joint Waiver of Appeal to give up their rights to appeal.

Finalizing a Divorce Case

The judge must first see all the filed papers and talk to spouses at the court hearing to finalize a divorce and sign a divorce decree. To set this hearing, they must file a joint request with the court clerk.

The spouses should bring copies of all filed papers, a parenting plan, and a proposed final judgment. If they wish to waive the 30-day waiting period and finalize their divorce on the same day, they must file a Joint Waiver of Appeal beforehand.

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Uncontested divorce 
in Washington D.C.

Uncontested Divorce in Washington D.C.

If both parties agree to get divorced and don’t blame each other for the marriage breakdown, they can consider the possibility of making their divorce uncontested. They will also have to resolve minor disputes about child custody, property division, etc.

A divorce by mutual consent is usually less expensive and exhausting than traditional litigation with court trials. The couples also need fewer papers to initiate their divorce, which decreases time spent on paperwork and in a courthouse.

The primary document all divorcing spouses must complete and file is a Complaint for Divorce. If they decide to proceed amicably, they also need to attach a settlement agreement with the provisions on the:

  • child custody and visitation type and schedule
  • alimony and child support
  • property division (assets, cash, debts, real estate, etc.)
Child custody

Getting a Divorce with Children in Washington D.C.

Child custody

Any divorce involving minor children must include custody and child support orders. If spouses agree to all issues, they can develop a joint parenting plan and present it for court approval.

D.C. family law has the following types of child custody:

  • Joint legal custody (the preferable type) means that both parents have equal decision-making rights concerning the child’s education, healthcare, etc.
  • Sole legal custody is when the court allows a primary custodial parent to decide how to raise the child.
  • Joint physical custody means the child has frequent contact with each parent and may live in each home for an equal amount of time.
  • Sole physical custody allows only one parent to live permanently with a child.

If the spouses cannot agree on a joint parenting plan, they can opt for mediation, where a skilled divorce mediator will help them conclude an agreement. And if mediation was unsuccessful, D.C. judges determine child custody terms with attention to the following factors:

  • the child’s and the parent’s wishes
  • the child’s relationship with each parent, sibling, and others
  • each party’s physical and mental health
  • the history of domestic violence
  • the parent’s ability to communicate or share custody
  • each parent’s employment and financial capacity to support a child, etc.
Child Support

Child Support

Child support means periodic payments that one parent pays to the other for the child’s needs, such as education, transportation expenses, healthcare, etc.

In Washington D.C., this payment amount is calculated based on the Income Shares Model. An obligor will pay the established percentage of their income for the child’s support.

D.C. has the Child Support Guidelines with detailed tables that the courts and parents can use to find the correct amount of child support. Besides the basic support obligation, the family court must also decide on extraordinary expenses and insurance.

Child support ends when a child reaches 21. However, the payments may terminate earlier if they get married, join the military, or become self-supporting.

Divorce Without a Lawyer in Washington D.C.

Divorce Without
a Lawyer
in Washington D.C.

Hiring an attorney for legal representation and drafting divorce paperwork in Washington D.C., is very expensive. For example, the average hourly rate of a D.C. divorce lawyer is $200-$300.

Luckily, spouses have an affordable alternative to paying thousands of dollars to attorneys. Namely, they can use an online divorce service to help them prepare all the necessary legal paperwork to start a divorce. The best service for this purpose is

At, you will receive all the paperwork you need to file for divorce in Washington D.C., in only two business days. And don’t worry - you don’t have to know the specifics of the divorce process to get your paperwork.

All you need is to answer our simple online questionnaire so that we can select the correct packet of forms that apply to your situation. Moreover, you will get a written guide with filing instructions to help you start your divorce without delay.

Prepare for your amicable divorce inexpensively and efficiently with

Frequently Asked Questions

How long will it take to get divorced in Washington D.C.?

Simple uncontested divorces take at least two-three months to finalize. Conversely, contested cases with many disputes about property and children can last 6-10 months.

Can I get a free divorce in Washington D.C.?

A free divorce means a judge can waive your filing fees if you cannot afford to pay them and can prove it. To request a fee waiver, complete and file Form 106A (Application to Proceed Without Prepayment of Costs).

How do I file for divorce in Washington D.C.?

If you want to start a divorce in the District of Columbia, file a Complaint for Absolute divorce and several other legal forms with your local court. If you do not live in Washington D.C., file the papers in the county where your spouse lives.

How much does a divorce cost in Washington D.C.?

Contested divorces with many disputes cost $10,000 on average, most of which is the lawyer’s fees. But if your divorce is uncontested, you can save thousands of dollars by preparing all paperwork with