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How to File for Divorce


If you are in a marriage that no longer works, you may be considering divorce but not sure where to start. A divorce is initiated when one of the parties to a marriage files for divorce. But what exactly is involved with filing for divorce?

How Do You File for Divorce?

If you are considering a divorce but need help exploring the process, a divorce attorney might be able to help you. A lawyer can often help you figure out how your state's divorce laws will apply to you and tell you more about the divorce process, including how to file for divorce. If you'd like to connect with an attorney near you, just fill out the short form below.

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Filing for Divorce

When you file for divorce, you need to make sure that you file in the correct court. Each county within your state will probably have slightly different paperwork and procedures that you will need to follow to file for your divorce.

After you learn which court is appropriate for you to file for your divorce, you need to start the paperwork.

The laws governing the different types of divorce will vary greatly from state to state. A lawyer can help you decide whether to file for a no-fault divorce, or a fault-based divorce. Every state has instituted a no-fault divorce option (New York was the last state, and did so in 2010).

You may want to exercise cautious about the websites that offer to give you all the forms you need for filing for divorce in your state. This is because each area within the state will likely have their own forms, so what works in the northern portion of your state may not work in a district in the southern region and states may update or change their requirements.

You can talk to a divorce attorney about how to file for divorce and what types of paperwork and documentation you will need.

After Filing For Your Divorce

Once your divorce has been filed with the court, the process will move according to you state's laws, but will generally include division of assets, spousal support, child custody and other issues. When going through your divorce, you may wish to enlist an attorney to help you determine how the laws will affect these issues and present your side of the case.

Once these issues are decided, the judge will issue a divorce decree, officially and legally ending your marriage.