Getting a quick divorce can save you and your partner both emotional and financial anguish. However, when children are involved, it can be difficult since there will be the issues of child support and custody battles to work out. To succeed in dissolving the marriage quickly, these details must be solved in the fairest way for both parties.
The cheapest way to get a divorce with a child involves both you and your spouse to remain cordial, and be ready to compromise on several issues. Property division and child custody, which are the main battle fronts in most divorce proceedings.
To get a cheap divorce, you can start the process online and minimize the number of professional services you contract. In order to get the cheapest divorce possible, you must make sure that both you and your spouse are willing to work together and your divorce is uncontested.
Follow these steps below:
1. Use an online divorce paper preparation service to help you fill out your paperwork in as little as 30 minutes at a budget friendly cost ($149 – $399). Additionally, there are some states that allow for e-filing but the majority of states don’t have this option. From the courts website, you can prepare the forms right from your computer without any legal assistance. From here you can save the prepared files in a PDF format and print several copies.
2. Ensure the divorce is uncontested (you and your spouse agree to everything) and that your spouse agrees to the terms stated in the papers. These include child support, custody, visitation, asset and debt division among other critical issues.
3. Ensure all the divorce details are in the papers you have prepared. These include your vital details like names, social security numbers, addresses, marriage date and location, children names and the property you are dividing. Remember to include the reason for divorce. Be careful when getting forms from the local state court site, each state has different requirements and it can be easy to miss one form required in your county.
4. Check the court site if it has adequate information, or ask the court clerk how to file the divorce paperwork. Then proceed to pay any of the required fees in your county and state in addition to the document preparation fee. You can then file these papers online or submit them to the court clerk in case you cannot complete an online filing. If your using an online divorce service, you can speak with someone over the phone to get help on filing out the paperwork.
5. If required, you will have your spouse served with the papers. This must be done by someone older than 18 years or use a professional process server service. You are not allowed to serve the papers yourself.
6. Prepare divorce papers that are a favorable compromise between the two parties, something both of you can live with. When you do this, there are fewer chances of either of you going to court to make motions later.
7. Add all the necessary supplemental forms to your original documents. Alternatively, ask your attorney to help complete the papers. An online divorce is a cheaper alternative to the traditional uncontested divorce. It helps prevent the emotional turmoil associated with divorce proceedings and removes many of the court process formalities.
Even if you plan on representing yourself, divorce can be expensive. However, there are ways to make it cheaper or even divorce with no money. Here are some tips to go about it:
Divorce fee waiver
Each state has an indigent fee waiver that allows you to file for your divorce without paying the filing costs. When you go into your local court, ask the court’s clerk what forms you need inorder to waive the fees. This option is only available and designed for those with limited finances while filing for divorce.
Getting divorce forms
You can get the divorce forms online from the local divorce court site or use a service like mydivorcepapers.com we highly recommend. You can also download the form for asking for a fee waiver. Some sites have instruction booklets that help users in filling the forms. If you can easily access the courthouse, then the clerk can help you with the forms and instructions for filling them.
Provide financial proof of indigence
Include proof of your income, debts, and tax returns to prove to the court that you cannot afford the court fees. You will then get the forms notarized by your bank or the court clerk.
Once the is done, the court will review your applications and once the fee waiver is approved or deferred, you can move forward with the case. You can simply file a settlement or make a court appearance together and tell the judge what you have agreed on. If the divorce is uncontested, then your ex-partner does not need to appear in court, this will be a quick process and much cheaper on both of you.
A legal researcher by trade, Steffan serves as the Editor for all of eDivorce’s helpful guides and blog posts. He loves writing about the legal process in an effort to help reduce the complexities of the legal system. Learning from his own personal divorce, he enjoys sharing what has helped him, what didn’t, and how to move on with your life.