How to File For Divorce?

How do I file a divorce by myself?

Are you looking to file a divorce but do not know where to start? Follow this Step-by-Step instruction guidelines to find out how.

Step 1: Determine what Petition you should file.

Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage:

  • You and your spouse agree that that marriage cannot be saved.
  • You and your spouse have NO minor or dependent children
  • The wife has no minor children born during the marriage and wife is not pregnant
  • You and your spouse have agreed how the Assets and Liabilities will be divided.
  • Neither party is seeking financial support from the other person (Alimony).
  • You and your spouse will give up the Right to Trial.
  • You and your spouse are willing to Sign the Petition.
  • You and your spouse are willing to go to the Final Hearing.

If you can answer yes to the following questions, you may file a “Simplified Dissolution of Marriage”. If you have answered no to any of the questions, please see the other divorce Petitions.

 

Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with Dependent or Minor Children:

  • Do you or your spouse have a dependent or minor child(ren) together?
  • Are you or your spouse currently pregnant?

If the answer if yes to either question, you may file a “Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with Dependent or Minor Child(ren).”

 

Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with Property But No Dependent or Minor Children:

  • Either party disagrees about division of Property, Debts, or Other Issues (Assets and Liabilities) and need a judge to settle the dispute.
  • Either party is seeking spousal support (Alimony).
  • Do either party have questions or concerns about other parties Income, Expenses, Assets, Debts, or Other issues.
  • Would like to have the right to appeal a judge’s decision.

If you answer yes to any of the above questions, then you may file a “Petition for Dissolution of Marriage With Property But No Dependent or Minor Child(ren).”

 

STEP 2: WHAT OTHER DOCUMENTS DO I FILE WITH THE DIVORCE PETITION?

Divorce Simplified Dissolution of Marriage:

  1. Petition for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage
  2. Cover Sheet for Family Law Court Case
  3. Vital Statistic Report Form
  4. Marital Settlement Agreement for Simplified Dissolution of Marriage
  5. Proof you, your spouse, or both have lived in Florida for more than 6 months. Either by:
    1. Florida Driver’s License,
    2. Florida Identification Card, or
    3. Florida Voter Registration Card (Issued at least 6 months ago).
    4. Testimony of someone who can verify living in Florida for more than 6 months.
    5. Affidavit of Corroborating Witness.

Depending on your jurisdiction, the court may ask you to complete and bring to the final hearing a, “Final Judgment of Simplified Dissolution of Marriage.”

 If self represented, you should read the FAMILY LAW FORMS, COMMENTARY, AND INSTRUCTIONS GENERAL INFORMATION FOR SELF-REPRESENTED LITIGANTS. 

 

Divorce Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with Dependent or Minor Children:

  1. Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with Dependent or Minor Children
  2. Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act Affidavit (UCCJEA)
  3. Notice of Social Security Number 
  4. Family Law Financial Affidavit
    1. If your income is more than $50,000
    2. If your income is less than $50,000
  1. Proof you, your spouse, or both have lived in Florida for more than 6 months. Either by:
    1. Florida Driver’s License,
    2. Florida Identification Card, or
    3. Florida Voter Registration Card (Issued at least 6 months ago).
    4. Testimony of someone who can verify living in Florida for more than 6 months.
    5. Affidavit of Corroborating Witness.
  2. Summons
  3. Certificate of Compliance with Mandatory Disclosure (Filed within 45 days of service of the Petition on the Respondent).
  4. Child Support Guidelines Worksheet(May be completed after Financial Affidavit from opposing party is served)

If Parties have reached an agreement, they can file one or both of the following:

  1. Marital Settlement Agreement for Dissolution of Marriage with Dependent or Minor Child(ren)
  2. Parenting Plan

 

Divorce Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with Property but No Dependent or Minor Children

  1. Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with Property but No Dependent or Minor Children
  2. Notice of Social Security Number
  3. Family Law Financial Affidavit
    1. If your income is more than $50,000
    2. If your income is less than $50,000
  4. Proof you, your spouse, or both have lived in Florida for more than 6 months. Either by:
    1. Florida Driver’s License,
    2. Florida Identification Card, or
    3. Florida Voter Registration Card (Issued at least 6 months ago).
    4. Testimony of someone who can verify living in Florida for more than 6 months.
    5. Affidavit of Corroborating Witness.
  5. Summons
  6. Certificate of Compliance with Mandatory Disclosure (Filed within 45 days of service of the Petition on the Respondent).

If Parties have reached an agreement on any or all the issues you may file, the following:

  1. Marital Settlement Agreement for Dissolution of Marriage with Property but No Dependent or Minor Child(ren)

 

 

What happens once I file the divorce documents?

Once you have filled the divorce documents, the court will docket this information and issue a case number and a judge. The clerk of court will then issue the summons. Once you have the summons, you must provide a copy of all the documents to a process server. The process server will hand deliver the documents to your spouse (aka personal service). Once the person has been “served”, they have 21 days to file a response also know an an answer or answer and counter-petition.

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