Divorce Guide

Divorce Guide

Divorce Court Papers

Divorce court papers are inevitable part of divorce. These forms and documents are needed to complete a divorce process. Divorce paperwork differs with states and countries in which you reside or the place where you have filed for divorce. A clear understanding of such papers is very important. Even a minor error can lead to rejection of your divorce papers.

Divorce is a tiring process. You need to focus on filling and filing of your divorce court papers very carefully. It is always advised to hire a lawyer due to the legal technicalities involved in most of the divorce cases.

If children are not involved in your divorce and there are very little property and debts, you can go for filing of divorce paperwork by yourself. State specific divorce papers and forms are available online and also at the county clerk’s office.

Whether you prepare the divorce papers or your lawyer does it, you must have the following documents with you. These are property deeds and titles, marriage license, birth certificates, vehicle titles, bank account information, last year tax records, insurance papers, loan accounts, mortgage accounts, retirement or pension accounts.

Divorce court papers that are to be filed with the court must also include every detail of property and assets division. Any existing debt and future debts should also be included. In case children are involved in the divorce, the papers must specify details on child related issues.

The divorce court papers must contain provisions for:

  • Child custody (sole or joint)
  • Child support, means and ways of payments
  • Timings for visitation and any exceptions
  • Insurance of children
  • Any restrictions on moving out of the area located
  • Property division, and how deeds and titles will be transferred
  • Division of debt
  • Division of various accounts, like saving and investment
  • Settlements

Once all these papers are ready, file it with the court clerk of your county. You are also required to prepare a petition or summons. These divorce papers must also be legally served on your spouse and proof of that service should be obtained. It can be done in any of the following ways:

First Class Mail: An acknowledgement form is mailed along with the divorce papers that should be signed, dated and returned.

Certified Mail: A detachable card attachment is mailed along with the divorce papers. This detachable card or the “return receipt card” needs to be mailed back by your spouse which serves as a service proof.

Accept of Service: Personally deliver the divorce paperwork to your spouse and get it signed and dated as a proof of service.

Personal Service: A professional server or a sheriff can be hired for serving of the papers. This is filed with the court.

Publication: If none of the above methods are applicable, the court allows publication of the divorce petition in newspapers for a limited period of time.

Divorce court papers can also be served by your friend or any relative. But none of them should be a minor. Serving divorce papers is a crucial step and this actually initiates the divorce process.

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