The decision of divorce is quite difficult for either partner. But if the relationship has taken a bad turn, and either spouse wants out of the marriage, then the first step is planning together to reduce the cost of divorce. The traditional form of divorce is a costly process and will put a lot of strain on you. But not methods are complicated and troublesome. Some are even easy and direct. If you and your partner agree to apply for divorce online, then you can save a lot of money.
In this article, you will learn the steps and requirements that you need to follow in getting a divorce online.
Steps for filing an online divorce
Here are the steps that you need to follow:
Step 1: The decision to file for a divorce must be mutual
If you are filing for divorce, make sure that your spouse agrees to it as well. If there is no mutual agreement on the decision, then online divorce is not possible, and you might have to take the long route of court proceedings. When there is consent by both parties, you may not even need an attorney for processing the divorce application.
Step 2: Divide the property with mutual consent
Besides the consent of both parties to getting a divorce, you will also need to come to an agreement with your spouse on all terms of the dissolution, starting with the division of property. For the property distribution, you might need to read the available guidelines over the online websites, as different states have different laws. You need to know whether the state you reside in is a community property state or common law property state.
In community property states, all property (including any real property, assets, and debts) acquired during the marriage is split equally (50/50). Any property acquired by either spouse before the marriage, as well as any gifts or inheritances received by either spouse during the marriage, is considered as separate property and will remain in the possession of that spouse.
In common law property states, property acquired after marriage on behalf of the couple, is considered as marital property. In this case, the local court needs to take involvement in the process and will divide the property in the fairest way possible. Like with community property states, all separate property will remain separate.
Couples have the option to come up with their own settlement agreement for how to divide the property, and if the judge deems it fair, it will be approved by the courts. Therefore, if you are seeking an online divorce, it is important to come to an arrangement that follows closely with the requirements of your state.
Step 3: Decide on child custody and support.
If you have any children with your spouse, then you need to decide on custody (with whom the children will live) and on maintenance (how the expenses of the upbringing of the child will be split between parents). This can be a complicated task to resolve. Parents will need to carefully add up their expenses and come to terms on living and visitation arrangements that keep the best interests of the child in mind. All states have their child support calculator tools available to help you determine a fair amount. Child support typically lasts until a child reaches the age of 18 or graduates from high school (whichever happens last). Often the assistance of an attorney or mediator is necessary to assist with the negotiations.
Like with your settlement agreement for property division, a judge will review your parenting plan, and if it is fair and has the best interests of the child in mind, it will be approved.
Step 4: Put it in writing
After finalizing your mutual agreement on all issues related to the divorce, make sure to put it all in writing. Having all the information easily available will make filing for your uncontested divorce online much easier and faster.
Step 5: Proceed with your online divorce.
Now that you have everything in order to move forward with an uncontested divorce and all the information about your divorce at the ready, you can begin your online divorce. Online divorce companies exist to take on the hassle of the divorce paperwork process for you at a much cheaper price than using an attorney. By using this service there will be no need to drive to the court to pick up forms or to make appointments to see an attorney. The paperwork is handled for you without even having to leave the comfort of your own home.
Obviously, the first step here is deciding on an online divorce site to use. Once you have decided on a site and have reviewed their guidelines, you will create an account on the website. The online divorce platform will have you complete a questionnaire about the details of your case. That information will be used to determine the proper forms for your divorce and to complete the paperwork. In as little as 2 days, you will receive all of your ready-to-file divorce papers.
You need to accept an agreement stating that all the information you provide in the online form is valid to the best of your knowledge and will have to indicate the mutual consent of both parties for divorce over the internet. Most online divorce websites are known for their easy to follow instructions and friendly and helpful customer support. And if you have any reservations after receiving the paperwork you can still take them to an attorney to look it over before filing.
Step 6: Sending of a registered divorce notice to the spouse
Once you receive your online divorce documents, you will need to print them and sign. You will also have to send a copy of the legal divorce notice to your spouse through e-mail or deliver the divorce papers in-person for them to sign. Both parties need to have copies as evidence for their mutual filing of the divorce.
Step 7: Verification and processing of the application
After filing the papers with the court and paying the filing fee, you just wait. Many states have a mandatory waiting period after all the forms are received by the court before the final divorce decree can be signed. After the mandatory waiting period, a judge will review your paperwork, including your settlement agreement. The process might involve an in-person visit in the form of a mandatory court hearing to know whether both the parties have no objection in the process. The point of it all is so that the judge can ensure the mutual consent to the marriage and fairness of the terms. After all the verification, the judge will sign the divorce decree making the divorce official.
These are the steps that you must follow to complete a cheap and easy online divorce. The usual attorney-oriented process takes up a lot of time and also puts a heavy load on your bank account. If the divorce is mutual, then filing it online is the most convenient way to get the work done. Online platforms have a team of experts that are very knowledgeable about all the legal terms and conditions for the divorce process. They will make sure that the forms you get are completed according to the peculiarities of your case following the rules of your specific state and county. Therefore, you can be confident that your paperwork will be accepted by the courts so that you can reach the desirable outcome in the shortest possible terms.