Divorce Procedures in Your State

Divorce Procedures in Your State

As you probably already know, divorce is handled differently in every state.

For example, states differ on the residency period (the amount of time you or your spouse must live in a state before you can file for divorce).

Some states also have a waiting or "cooling off" period. This is the amount of time that must pass between your separation and the finalization of the divorce.

Specific Forms

Each state's court system also requires specific divorce forms. Following your state's specific procedure is critical.

Fortunately, when you file an uncontested divorce through LegalZoom, we take care of state-specific requirements.

However, if you're interested in how your state handles divorce, including information on divorce with children, types of divorces, and spousal issues, please click on your state for an overview.

Remember, LegalZoom creates state-specific divorce forms. The questions we ask are tailored to your state.

  • Introduction to the Divorce Process
    LegalZoom's education center provides you with the resources you need to consider a divorce. You'll find general divorce information in our Education Center, and our FAQs answer common divorce questions. Access to the Glossary and Useful Resources gives you a variety of tools to make...
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  • Uncontested vs. Contested Divorces
    At the heart of every divorce are four issues: 1. Division of community and/or marital property2. Division of debt3. Custody of any children4. Payment of child and/or spousal support
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  • Legal Requirements for Divorce
    Under most state laws, a divorce (or "dissolution") action must be filed and decided in court. All states have a "no-fault divorce" policy. In other words, the courts are not concerned with which spouse was guilty of marital misconduct. The following legal requirements are necessary to...
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  • The Divorce Process
    A divorce starts with a divorce petition. The petition is written by one spouse (the petitioner) and served on the other spouse. The petition is then filed in a state court in the county where one of the spouses resides. It does not matter where the marriage occurred. The petition includes...
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  • Custody of Minor Children in a Divorce
    Both parents must decide on the custody of minor children under the age of 18. Divorce courts are concerned about the well-being of any children born naturally or adopted by the parents. There are four basic types of child custody recognized under state laws:
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  • Child Support in a Divorce
    Child support is mandatory in any divorce involving minor children. Petitioners with minor children must include an order for child support, even if the other parent is unemployed or cannot be found. Most state laws have guidelines to determine child support payments. The payment amount...
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