Washington divorce details
Uncontested vs Contested Divorce in Washington
The Uncontested divorce is the marriage dissolving when the spouses are eager not to fight for their rights but finish the process the faster the more relevant.
The grounds for the Uncontested divorce can be:
- The adultery
- The constant cruelty of one of the spouses
- The incurable illness of one of the spouses
- The absence of one of the spouses for more than 1 year
And lots of many other reasons. During the Uncontested divorce, you do not need to prove your innocence of this or that case, you have already had a negotiation with your spouse and arranged the whole divorce proceeding. The Contested divorce is an absolutely another process. It is the marriage termination when both spouses cannot meet the requirements of each other. It provides huge financial losses with the help of the attorney, etc. The fee you spend on the Contested divorce will be twice higher than the cost of the Uncontested one. You should think over all the little aspects of both divorces before you make the decision what divorce to choose.
The Uncontested divorce is much easier than the Contested one, as we have admitted before, it has a lot of benefits, for instance:
- A high speed of the process
- No guilty spouses
- No help of the attorney
- The ability to represent yourself in the courtroom
These and other benefits make the Uncontested divorce so preferable among others, but with all these pros we can also point out several cons of the Uncontested divorce, here are they:
- Child custody may cause some complications that cannot be suitable for the Uncontested divorce
- Property division may not be equal that also can convert into the Contested divorce
The Supreme Court deals with the Uncontested divorce only if the couple meets all the residency requirements, so let’s see them.
Washington Residency Requirements to file for the divorce
As in any other state, the Washington State has its own laws that must be confirmed. Sometimes couples think that if they currently live in Washington, the Supreme Court will grant them a divorce, but it is not the truth. The residence requirements of the Washington State are as follows:
- If one spouse is a constant resident of Washington and another spouse is not, there will be the problem to get a divorce. The couple should write a special Petition to the court with the divorce request. Since the Petition is given to the court, the Petitioner should serve another spouse with it. In the term of 90 days, the court will act upon the documents. (Revised Code of Washington - Title 26 - Chapters: 26.09.010, 26.09.030)
- The couple should live in the Washington State not less than 6 months
All these requirements are highly wanted for all the couples that are going to get the Divorce Decree in the Washington State. If you have any difficulties with your case, you’d better take an advice of the well-experienced lawyer or another legal body.
How to file for an Uncontested Divorce in Washington?
To begin filing for the divorce, you need to agree with your spouse such issues as:
- the division of the common debts and the marital property
- the alimony
- the child custody and visitation
- the spousal support
In general, the whole scheme of filing for the divorce is not so complicated, as it is usually thought, it has the following steps:
- Make a decision to terminate the legal marriage
- Negotiate all the divorce issues with your spouse in advance. Go to the mediation process with your spouse if something goes wrong with the spousal agreement
- Take the required forms for especially your case and serve your spouse with them
- Arrange which type of the divorce you really have and fulfill your actions regarding this type
- Be sure that in your county the Supreme Court will approve all the documents and forms
- Wait a 90-days waiting period until the court will schedule the final hearing
- Go to the Final Judgment and get the Certificate of the marriage termination
All these steps are very peculiar, and they can change regarding your case, so be sure what steps exactly you should follow.
DIY Divorce in Washington
The Do It Yourself divorce is at its highest point right now. The couples do not want to overpay to the attorney and other additional legal bodies and decide to represent themselves in the court, prepare all the documents to file with the divorce, etc. It is a rather convenient way of getting the divorce because you can rely only on yourself and all the extra payments you control as well. The preparation of the documents you can order on the special online website and save your time and money, we will speak about it later. In general, the DIY divorce can take place if you have only the Uncontested divorce and also you have no claims or quarrels with each other. Nowadays, if you meet all the residency requirements of the Washington State, you can easily get a divorce depending only on yourself.
How much does an Uncontested Divorce cost in Washington?
The Uncontested divorce in the Washington State costs approximately $15000. It can include the attorney help that may cost $500-600 per hour. All the costs are stipulated by the Supreme Court and can vary according to the terms of your case. According to the Contested divorce, it usually costs $26,450 per divorcee. Can you count the difference in prices of the Uncontested and the Contested divorce? It is an apparent gap between them. Seldom, the cost of the divorce in the Washington State may even be $50 000 for the whole process. So, you need to realize the real fee for the divorce and be prepared for some extra expenses.
How Long Does It Take to Get Divorced in Washington
Actually, the Uncontested divorce can be no longer than 6-7 months, including all the aspects of the procedure. The Contested divorce takes much time and can be approximately 12 months. The case is dependant on the issues that can make the divorce more complicated. You should do everything to get an Uncontested divorce and significantly save your time.
Papers and Documents You Need to Get a Divorce in Washington
- Service Accepted FL All Family 117
- Declaration: Personal Service Could not be Made in Washington FL All Family 102
- Declaration re: Service Members’ Civil Relief Act FL All Family 170
- Waiver of Rights Under ServiceMembers Civil Relief Act No Mandatory Form Available
- Civil Case Cover Sheet Cover Sheet
- Sealed Personal Health Care Records (Cover Sheet) FL All Family 012
- Sealed Confidential Reports (Cover Sheet) FL All Family 013
- Sealed Financial Source Documents Cover Sheet FL All Family 011
- Petition for Order for Protection (Domestic violence: WPF DV 1.015)
- Declaration Regarding Public Assistance (FL All Family 132)
- Notice of Address Change (FL All Family 120)
- Petition for Divorce - FL Divorce 201
- Summons – FL Divorce 200
- Confidential Information Form and Attachment - FL All Family 001 & 002
- Declaration re: Service members’ Civil Relief Act
- Notice re Military Dependent - FL All Family 103
- Instructions for Proof of Personal Service - FL All Family 101
- Instructions for Declaration: Personal Service Could Not be made in Washington - FL All Family 102
- Annulment/Invalidity (INV 3)
- Child Custody (CUS 3)
- Committed Intimate Relationship (CIR 3)
- Dissolution with Children (DIC 3)
- Dissolution with no Children (DIN 3)
- Dissolution of Domestic Partnership with Children (DPC 3)
- Dissolution of Domestic Partnership with No Children (DPN 3)
- Foreign Judgment (FJU 3)
- Invalidity-Domestic Partnership (INP 3)
- Legal Separation (SEP 3)
- Legal Separation-Domestic Partnership (SPD 3)
- Mandatory Wage Assignment (MWA 3)
- Modification (MOD 3)
- Modification: Support Only (MDS 3)
- Out-of-State Custody (OSC 3)
- Parenting Plan/Child Support (PPS 3)
- Reciprocal, Respondent in County (RIC 3)
- Reciprocal, Respondent Out of County (ROC 3)
All these documents are required by the court of the Washington State, but you should remember that especially in your case you need particular forms.You may need not all of them.
How to serve your spouse in Washington
In the Washington State, you need to serve your spouse within 21 days from the Petition signing. You can do it by yourself, or you can use the help of the Sheriff. Furthermore, you may send your spouse all the documents by the official post or the certified email. Moreover, you may send your spouse all the documents by the official post or the certified email. There are lots of variants to deliver the documents to another spouse. You can choose the most suitable for you.
Online Divorce in Washington
Online divorce is a really wise decision for the better and faster divorce process. You need to be extremely attentive to the way of the online divorce in the Washington State. Firstly, you need to find an appropriate website at a reasonable price. On our site, the price is $149. Then, you have to pay the fee and wait until your documents are ready. The last step is to download the documents from your email and file with the court. The whole process is as easy as a piece of cake. You do not need to spend lots of money on the attorney help, and also there are no hidden fees. Everything is accurate and clear. You can try to order the preparation of the documents online, and you will be pleasantly impressed.
Rules for child support in Washington
The child support is the extremely significant moment of the divorce process. The children will suffer anyhow because of the divorce, and the duty of both parents and the legal bodies is to make it is smoother is possible.
In the Washington State, there are two types of the custody parents, the non-custodial parent – the parent who does not spend enough time with the children because of several factors and the custodial one – the parent who spends most of his/her time with the children and pays the bigger sum of money on the children. Usually, the parents share the custody in equal parts, but seldom the court decides who will be more effective for the child/children. Each parent should take into account a lot of factors of the child custody and be ready to think about such aspects as:
- the income of both spouses
- the health state of both spouses
- the additional expenses on the child
- the rate of the taxes of both spouses
The Supreme Court will estimate all these nuances and will make the final decision regarding the child custody.
Rules for spousal support in Washington
The spousal support or the alimony is appointed only by the Supreme Court of the Washington State. The factors that can influence the sum of the spousal support are almost the same as for the child custody: health state of the spouses, tax rates, etc. The Spouses can agree on the particular sum of money paid monthly, if they fail to do it, the mediator will help them to find the consensus. The spousal support can be terminated when one of the spouses dies, remarries, or the term of the alimony is over. You need to clarify the issues of the spousal support as early as possible in order to understand how things can be later.
Division of property in Washington
In the Washington State, all the property that the couple possesses can be divided into two points: marital property and separate one. Marital property can be shared by the spouses after the divorce process, but the separate property may not be shared because it belongs only to one of the spouses. The spouses should agree on the particular property division or convert the divorce process into the Contested one. The following factors will be considered in arranging the division of the common property:
- The type of the property
- The term of the marriage
- The financial state of both spouses
The court makes a decision according to the facts and evidence given by the spouses, so try to calculate together the property and your personal share.
Divorce Mediation in Washington
The Mediation is the proceeding, which helps people to come to the agreement. The Mediation is a rather easy event, the judge appoints the time of the Mediations. The negotiations can repeat several times until you finally discuss everything. In case of the Contested divorce, the court will not approve the divorce without the mediation process.
How to divorce a missing spouse in Washington
To divorce a missing spouse in the Washington State, you need to first do everything possible to find his/her current location. You should apply to the police, make notes in the local newspapers or journals, ask the relatives of the missing spouse to give you any information, etc. The court will support you in the searching attempts. Finally, if you cannot find the missed person, the court will schedule the court hearing without him/her presence.
The Default Divorce in Washington
In the Washington State, the Default divorce means that one of the spouses has no desire to answer the Petition for the divorce process and anyway tries to avoid going to the court. In such a case, the court is simply bound to arrange the final hearing without the spouse rejecting the whole proceeding. For beginning the Default process, you need to write a Motion for Default Judgment and an Order Granting Default Judgment. You have to file these papers with the Supreme Court.
Default vs No-Fault Divorce in Washington
As we have already agreed with you, the Default divorce has many complications, moreover, the Default divorce will cost a bigger sum of money. The No-Fault (Uncontested) divorce is much easier in such a case. The waiting period for the Uncontested divorce in the Washington State is 90 days, the waiting period of the Default divorce can be much longer, approximately 120 days. The fee for the attorney also varies according to the term of the whole proceeding. Finally, both divorces will get the Divorce Decree, but anyway, if you are choosing the divorce type right now, it is better to choose the No-Fault one.
How can I get a Default Divorce Hearing in Washington?
Well, to get a Default divorce hearing, you need to follow the following steps
- Arrange all the nuances of the future divorce, such as county, the residency requirements, the type of the divorce, etc.
- Write the Petition for the divorce process to the Supreme Court
- Serve your spouse with the required documents
- Get the responding from your spouse ( if he/she agrees or rejects the Petition)
- Prove the grounds of the divorce, attach special notices or other documents for the court
- Schedule the mediation process
- Go to the trial and have a Final Decree
The proceeding described above is highly serious, so don’t try to argue with the court about the sequence of the events or your rights. Your task is to represent yourself with the dignity.
Annulment of the marriage in Washington
The annulment of the marriage is a slightly another proceeding as opposed to the divorce. The annulment is not a marriage termination, but the total agreement that the marriage has ever taken place. The grounds for such a process can be like these:
- one of the spouses was underaged (under 18 years old) at the marriage registration
- both spouses are blood relatives
- there is a fact of the bigamy
- the marriage was a fraud
And other grounds may be regulated by the court. After the annulment process, the spouses have to agree about the child custody, property division, and other aspects attentively, because, regarding the Washington State, after the annulment of the marriage the common children can be supported only by the mother.
Legal Separation in Washington
In the Washington State, you have a possibility to get a legal separation. Unlike other States, Washington allows such a proceeding. The main difference between the legal separation and the divorce process is that the separation does not mean the end of the legal marriage. The spouses can live independently, but not finish their marriage in the court. It is rather convenient because you do not need to divide the property. Of course, you should agree with each other about the terms of the child custody and the spousal support, but this process is far faster than the divorce. The Supreme Court in Washington does not specify any particular period for the spouses to live independently before the legal divorce itself.
The Same-Sex Divorce in Washington
Unfortunately, gay/lesbian marriage and divorce are not recognized by the Supreme Court of the Washington State. Since 2007 Washington allowed the same-sex couple a domestic partnership, that is not a legal registration. The same-sex couples have to apply to the court with the Petition for the legal cohabitation and have to go through the special process before the court allows them to stay together legally. The end of the domestic partnership is also the legal process that needs a separate kit of the documents, which is different in each county of the Washington State.
Military Divorce in Washington
To have a military divorce, you need to comprehend the same proceeding as the usual divorce process (see the information above). Only one significant problem is to serve your military spouse with all required documents even if he/she is far away from home. You need to ask the Sheriff for the help to deliver the documents, you may ask the commander of your spouse to give him/her the necessary documents, you can send them by post, etc. After you serve the spouse, the proceeding totally repeats the regular divorce process. The terms, waiting periods, cost of the divorce are absolutely the same.
How to divorce a spouse in a jail in Washington
The divorce with a spouse who is currently in a jail has the similar steps as any other divorce. To serve your spouse with all the documents and forms, you need to send them by post, deliver them by yourself, etc. If you meet all the residency requirements and prepare all the documents correctly, the court hearing will be appointed anyway, with or without the presence of your spouse.
Divorce filing fee
The fee for the divorce process in the Washington State depends on the case and the total duration of the process. You have to pay the court fee of your county within 10 days after the writing the Petition. You can do it by credit card or cash, it does not matter, but you should do it on time, without any prolongations.
Can a fee be waived?
In the Washington State, the fee can be waived, but only if you give the appropriate documents to the court that prove your disability to pay the divorce cost. You will have to show your total monthly income, your tax rate, debt sum and else. If the court approves your documents, your fee will definitely be waived.
How we can help
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