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Filing for divorce is one of the most stressfull times in most people's lives that actually go through a divorce. However, filing your divorce forms at the county courthouse doesn't have to be that hard. Filing your divorce forms is like making a bank deposit. You simply hand all your divorce forms to the County Clerk at your local County Courthouse. Then they simply give all the forms they don't need back to you. To file divorce forms is as simple as 1-2-3.
The concept of finding a website online that offers FREE Divorce Forms is truly a "pie in the sky" idea. I've looked. But the one thing you can find on the web is Free Divorce Information. This is abundant. Remember, if one could even find any Free Divorce Forms, they probably wouldn't come in a nice and handy set that one could just file with the Divorce Court. They would come as simple forms to fill out by hand and you would have to know what would be needed in each blank. In a normal divorce there are at least 8-12 divorce forms and probably more. So, that would be a lot of blanks to fill in. Free divorce forms (also spelled free divorse forms in some countries), are only as good as the source that gives them to you. The forms are the easy part, the divorce instructions are what is really needed in a divorce. That is where a Service like the Divorce Do It Yourself Service helps the individual. The Service fills in the forms for the client and gives them detailed instructions. Saving a ton of money on divorce lawyer. It is the best of both worlds.
Divorce Forms are sometimes hard to find online. Not to meantion that they are almost impossible to find for Free. Trust me, I've looked. However, there are companies that are established to help the individual file for divorce and help them with their divorce forms and divorce papers. Most of the time, in an uncontested divorce case, the idea is to save as much money as possible and not use a lawyer, as this would cause more problems for the divorcing couple than it would help. Using a low cost divorce service instead of a divorce attorney, is sometimes the only way to keep a simple case simple. Divorce (sometimes called divorse in foreign countries) is a traumatic time for most, even when the spouses are in agreement that they should get a divorce. So, a non attorney divorce service may be the best option for them. If you live in some of the larger States, these Do It Yourself Divorce Forms Services are plentiful. Some of the States where they exist are: California, Virginia, Michigan, Illinois, New York, Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, Arizona, Ohio, Pennsylvania. These States have many Do It Yourself Divorce Forms Services. However, if you live in one of the smaller States, you are not left out. There are many services that do divorce forms for all States. This is a good thing, because in some of the smaller States there are not as many divorce lawyers to choose from and the prices they charge is more, due to low competition. So, the Do It Yourself Divorce Services are still good for you. Which ever way you choose to go, rememeber to keep it simple.
Website companies and services can help parties with limited resources that agree on the issues of a marriage and disolution of the marriage. Most county courth clerk's offices can also provide free divorce records at your local courthouse. While the clerk's office cannot provide you with legal services or answer legal questions other than procedural questions, these divorce forms can assist parties with answering at least preliminary questions about pleadings, documents and the time line of filling for divorce.
Finding some online divorce forms is not that difficult. However, finding a good company to fill them in and complete your divorce forms is a bit harder. There are a few online companies out there that do it, but most of the divorce form companies do other things as well such as creating Corporations and Living Trusts. Only the best online divorce form companies, simply do one thing; and that is to complete divorce forms for the clients. There is one online company that I know of, that does one thing very well. They take a clients information and they complete the local and state divorce forms for the client and they give the client detailed information on what to do and say at the divorce court. All of this is done online. They are the Divorce Do-It-Yourself Service. I highly recommend them. They have saved thousands of people thousands of dollars on their divorce paperwork. All done without the costs of a divorce attorney or divorce lawyer.
When considering filing for divorce, if you both agree to all issues with regard to splitting assets and child custody (if children are involved) an easy and cost-effective way to accomplish your divorce would be to use a do it yourself divorce kit. This will likely save legal expenses and aid in receiving a quick divorce. Sometimes the help of an attorney is needed and desired, but a do it yourself divorce kit may save valuable resources in a situation where money is tight. Also, you may be able to take any outstanding issues to a mediator. The idea is to avoid hiring two expensive attorneys who may make the situation acrimonious.
Because divorce laws vary from state to state, when using prepared divorce forms it is a good idea to make sure that the forms you're purchasing contain laws pertinent to your state. Oftentimes pre-written divorce forms can ease the burden of legal fees even if the parties do not agree to all issues. Using prepared forms can separate issues before deciding whether or not professional legal counsel is desired or necessary.
Legal proceedings can seem complicated and hard to understand for someone who has no experience with the legal system. Even those who are familiar with legal forms can be confused by procedure and making sure that everything is filed correctly. One thing that pre-packaged divorce kits are able to do is provide all the divorce records necessary to legally complete the case. These types of kits can be found in office supply stores or may also be found online as well. Divorce kits are only for cases where all issues are agreed to by the parties, or uncontested divorces.
Unfortunately, life doesn't always happen like you plan. Sometimes, when facing the unpleasant situation of divorce, the circumstances may be complicated by a depletion of already tight resources. Divorce statistics indicate that this is the case in the majority of instances. If both parties agree to all issues, some cost may be reduced by filling out divorce forms and by filing the divorce paperwork yourself. These divorce form kits can be found in local office supply stores or online for a fraction of the cost of hiring one or two attorneys.
In a divorce case, everywhere across America, both parties are required by law to have all the divorce paperwork. The divorce forms and divorce papers, once filed at the court by the Plaintiff, are then "Served" on the Defendant. This simply means that the paperwork is given to the Defendant in a way that allows the court to know that all parties received the papers. There are a few simple was to do "Service". 1. Some States allow Registered Mail to be used. The postman brings the divorce forms in a package to the Defendant's home. The Defendant then signs for the package. 2. By County Seriff. The County Seriff brings the paperwork to the Defendant's Home or Work. (Home is preferable.) 3. By Process Server. These are much more expensive and this is not normally used unless you want to spend a lot of money for a person to go find your spouse if they are allusive. 4. By Publication. If you spouse cannot be located, you would run an add in a local newspaper. With a service like the Divorce Do It Yourself Service, they give you instructions about how to do your own Service of Process that is easiest in your area.
Uncontested divorce is another tem that is sometimes misunderstood when it comes to divorce advice. Uncontested divorce simply means that all issues have been agreed to by both parties and there is no need for court intervention. This, however, does not mean that the proper paperwork can be ignored for the divorce to be finalized and legal. Oftentimes, if everything is agreed to, rather than seeking attorneys on both sides, a do it yourself divorce kit may aid parties in sparing expense and time in resolving the disolution of the marriage. These forms can be found in local office supply stores or even through online websites.
Should you face the circumstances of divorce where all the issues are agreed to or otherwise known as an uncontested divorce and want to purchase a divorce kit rather than using an attorney to file paperwork for you, be sure that the divorce kit you're purchasing contains all the forms necessary. Use a reputable company, known for good service and one that comes with references or testimonies so that you know you're getting all documentation needed to complete the case.
There used to be a stereotypical response to any woman filing for divorce against her husband, which was "she'll take him to the cleaners." Whether true at one point or not, in today's society, most courts of law recognize that both parties contributed to the marriage in some manner and both deserve a fair and equitable division of marital property. If the wife files for divorce, there is no greater chance that she will be the one that ends up with the most property out of the marriage, than the husband. Judges look at the overall situation of the parties, the income of both, the debt load of both and attempt to fairly and equitably divide the property. Often is the case that when a judge has to be involved in resolving the matter, neither party ends up completely satisfied. This is why, if both parties can resolve isses on their own, they may be more likely to gain the property or division they're seeking, rather than having someone neutral and un-involved decide the matter.
Should you face the unfortunate situation of filing for divorce one thing to consider is how to save financial resources in what usually becomes an 'already tight' situation. Parties should carefully consider every issue with regard to the children and with regard to property division, providing for the children, retirement benefit split and every other issue that might be debatable in the divorce case. If you are the party filing for divorce, one way to help in saving money is to use online divorce forms if the parties agree to the issues.
Divorce Paralegals have a big job to do. In a divorce lawyer's or divorce attorney's office they do most of the divorce form preparation. You normally talk to your attorney for a few minutes, then they hand you off to the paralegal. The lawyer or attorney doesn't do much from that time on, until the end of the divorce case. The Divorce Paralegal has you fill out a Divorce Forms Intake Questionnaire and then he/she types that information into the computer and your divorce forms then get printed out. The Lawyer or Attorney did very little in the process. Then, in the very end, of an Uncontested Divorce case, the divorce lawyer or attorney would read off a pre-prepared statement for the court. Now that you know these things, you can seek out your own independant paralegal to do your divorce forms. Or you can find an Online Divorce Service that has independant paralegals to complete your divorce forms for you. Either way, you would save a ton of money over simply going to your yellow pages and finding a divorce lawyer or attorney.
Divorce terminology can sometimes be confusing. One of those terms often misunderstood is no fault divorce. It it sometimes thought that a no fault divorce means that every issue is resolved in the matter. This is actually not the case. A no fault divorce simply means that there need not be any blame or reason stated for one party seeking a divorce. Not all states have no fault divorce statutes in place, thereby making the party seeking the divorce state grounds. No fault divorce simply means any party seeking a divorce in a state that supports this type of divorce, will be granted a divorce, regardless of the other party's desires. This can mean a quick divorce, which is always preferable to both parties.
Using pre-written divorce forms to save in legal expense can be a great idea if both parties agree to all issues. Varying circumstances, such as one spouse being in the military, one spouse being absent from the state, or extenuating circumstances can also be covered by pre-printed forms. Be sure that all of the issues you feel are important are covered by the divorce forms. Once you're satisfied that all issues have been taken care of, it is often a good idea for an attorney to look over the forms to make sure both parties are protected. Using divorce forms from a reputable company can ensure that any legal fees are minimized in the long run.
Military divorce is slightly different from civilian divorce in that formulas for dividing military benefits will govern division of assets in most circumstances. The divorce forms may be similar but when considering filing for divorce and being a commissioned military personnel, it might be wise to educate yourself on laws in the state or country that the divorce is going to be filed. An attorney experienced in military divorce may be able to help if there are outstanding issues; however, if all issues in the divorce case are agreed upon and both parties are comfortable with using a divorce kit, this may save resources and ease the burden of filing divorce papers.
When seeking a divorce, there are a number of legal forms that you will need to complete. Divorce forms vary based on several factors, including state of residence, whether or not the proceedings are being contested and whether or not assets and/or children are involved. During divorce proceedings, you will be required to fill out and file more than one type of divorce form, as well as sign a number of forms as decreed by the court system.
Common Divorce Forms Include:
When you are the one who is getting "Served" the divorce papers, you have a few choices. 1. You can go to a lawyer and have them prepare an "Answer" for you. This is usually the most costly and is only used in a divorce where the husband and wife disagree on the terms of the divorce. 2. You can do nothing and the divorce will go through on a Default basis. This is where you sit on your hands and do absolutely nothing and the divorce happens just the way it looks like on the Divorce Paperwork that you have in front of you. 3. You can choose to have a service like the Divorce Do It Yourself Service do your divorce for you and then you would be in agreement to the divorce and you could sign the papers and agree to the terms of the divorce. Or you can contact your Spouse and have the divorce forms altered to meet what BOTH of you want in the divorce.
The term uncontested divorce refers to the fact that all issues within the marriage and disolution of the marriage have been agreed to and worked out by the parties. Uncontested divorce forms provided in a divorce kit will contain all the pleadings related to division or marital property, child custody issues, child support issues, alimony and any other issues related to dissolving the marriage. It may be important, even if divorce forms are used, to have an attorney at least look over the forms for any issues that the parties might not have covered. However, using divorce forms will greatly reduce the costs of legal advice.
Divorce Lawyers or Divorce Attorneys charge a lot compared to simply doing your own divorce forms. But, in some circumstances their advice can be invaluable. If you are having a contested divorce, where the husband and wife are fighting over the child support, custody, alimony, or the property in some way, then you will always need a divorce lawyer or divorce attorney. If you have an Uncontested Divorce where you and your spouse are in agreement to the terms of divorce and you want to do the divorce in the cheapest way possible, then a divorce lawyer or divorce attorney may not be for you. You can hire a Divorce Paralegal or an Online Divorce Service to complete your divorce forms. Saving you a lot of time, money, and head aches. Note: This will also work if you have a missing spouse or one of the spouses is in the military. Special consideration will need to be taken, but there are still some divorce paralegals and online divorce services that can still do your divorce forms for you.
When one party files for divorce, if the parties live in a no-fault state, there is usually not much that the responding party can do to keep the divorce from being filed or granted. Filing for divorce can be a tough proposition if one party does not desire the divorce and in many states, a no-fault divorce statute exists such that anyone seeking divorce must not state grounds other than incompatibility when seeking the divorce. Should you find yourself as the responding party in a divorce action, educate yourself as to what your rights are and how best to proceed. There are many online resources that can help you decide how best to resopnd.
If it appears that divorce is the outcome of a marrital relationship, the parties will be wise to consider all the ramifications involved, even that of the tax affect. Filing divorce and filing tax returns can be done in such a manner to benefit both parties. For example, someone filing a tax return of married filing jointly with all the deductions of home ownership, etc. may net the parties a larger return to split equitably than if both parties file separately. Especially if there are children involved, those deductions may make a large difference in what the parties have to pay in taxes. Carefully consider timing and options when it comes to filing your taxes the first year of your divorce.
The legal manuevering of filing a lawsuit can sometimes be confusing. When filing for divorce, the first pleading that is filed is a document called a petition. This is from the party seeking the divorce, essentially saying that for the stated reasons, this person feels that the marriage relationship is irretreivably broken. Once a petition for divorce is filed, then the other party files a response or answer. Usually the answer contains either an agreement with the petition or states in detail why the respondent or other party disagrees with the contentions filed in the petition. If the parties can and do agree on all the issues, then the resolution to the case usually comes quickly and an absolute divorce can be granted by a judge along with a property settlement agreement and a parenting plan if children are invovled.
When trying to save a little time and money in filing for divorce, parties may want to consider using the services of a divorce paralegal to help resolve issues or draw up documents to be filed in court. The services of a paralegal can often save money because, while most are knowledgeable about the laws in question, they're not admitted to practice law in court. Paralegals would be to attorneys as physician assistants are to doctors. They oftentimes possess knowledge such that they can look over forms and settlement agreements and decide whether the attention of a divorce attorney should be sought to resolve the matter.
To answer the question of whether a divorce lawyer can represent both parties in a divorce, in short, no. Because of the oath that any lawyer takes, it is unethical and illegal to represent two parties who have the same, yet differing interests in a lawsuit. Filing for divorce is filing a lawsuit essentially between two parties that have either agreed or alleged that the marriage relationship and contract is no longer viable. Even when parties agree on all the issues, a divorce lawyer can only legally represent one party. It might be advisable for both parties to seek legal advice to make sure that their interests are being fairly represented in any matter, including filing for divorce.
A divorce attorney can assist parties who have come to the conclusion that divorce is ultimately the result of disolving a marriage. The cost of hiring a divorce attorney can range from virtually free, should income guidelines be met, to the sky. Parties that are sincere about agreement on issues within the marriage, including custody, visitiation, child support, division of assets and property and ultimately the divorce, can often hire a divorce attorney to look over any agreements that they come to and make sure that the procedural aspects of the law are followed.
Divorce law can be complicated if you are not versed in legal settings and matters. As with any type of law, there are specific rules and time frames that must be followed to accomplish a legal separation or disolution of a marriage. Online forms available at reduced costs can aid one in educating themselves in the laws of divorce particular to your state. State laws do vary and it is important that you know for sure that the laws you're reading do pertain to your state. Procedure can vary as well, which is why many people, even though they have reached an agreement before filing for divorce, often seek the services of a divorce attorney. If for no other reason than to look over the settlement documents, it might be a good idea to consult with a divorce lawyer.
One way to minimize not only the financial cost of filing for divorce, but also at times, the emotional cost of divorce, is to use an attorney or third party for divorce mediation. A divorce mediator can sit down with the parties after receiving a list of the issues, and attempt, without interjecting any type of legal ruling, to resolve whatever issues the parties cannot solve on their own. Oftentimes, the cost of mediating a divorce situation can be less than time spent in court when you consider the cost of paying two attorneys versus one mediator. Before mediation begins, the divorce mediator will have the parties agree to work together as best they can to resolve issues and work together for the common good of both parties. Both parties will also most likely have to sign a statement agreeing to abide by whatever mediation agreement is reached and that it will become a part of the divorce file, like any of the other pleadings.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|