Sacramento Uncontested Divorce Steps
Uncontested divorces are ones that are settled without the assistance of the court. Contrary to popular belief, most people can obtain a divorce without going to court or hiring an attorney. Even though uncontested divorces are easier than contested ones, settling one is still a lengthy process.
At SD Esquire, we provide flat fee uncontested divorce services. We can help you file for and obtain a divorce in California. Read on to learn more about Sacramento uncontested divorce steps.
How to File and Serve the Divorce Papers
The first step in any divorce process is to file a petition for dissolution of marriage with the local court. You must prepare the Petition- Marriage/Domestic Partnership (FL-100) and Summons (FL-110). If there are children, the court requires a Declaration Under Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (FL-105) to be filed with the moving documents and served on the opposing party.
There are additional forms a party must complete if he/she is seeking child support or spousal support while the divorce is pending. In Sacramento County, the forms must be filed at the William R. Ridgeway Family Relations Court located at 3341 Power Inn Road. There is a $435 filing, which may be waived. Once the petition is filed, the filing spouse will need to serve the forms on the other spouse. The responding spouse will have 30 days to file a response, which also entails a $435 filing fee.
Prepare Financial Disclosures
California requires that each spouse prepare a Preliminary Financial Disclosure within 60 days of filing the petition or response. This step is mandatory and the court will not finalize the divorce without one.
Negotiate a Divorce Settlement
In an uncontested divorce, the couple must settle several issues. They must determine which assets are community property and divide the community property equally. They must also determine who will be responsible for paying marital debts. If there are children, they must work out a custody schedule and determine child support. They must also decide if one spouse will receive spousal support.
We can assist you through the negotiation process. We will serve as a neutral third party and help you reach an equitable agreement.
Finalize the Judgment Documents
Once the couple has come to an agreement, the couple or one of their attorneys will draft a settlement agreement. Both spouses need to sign the agreement and have it notarized. The agreement must be attached to the Judgment (FL-180). The Judgment should be filed with the following forms: Appearance, Stipulations, and Waivers (FL-130); Declaration for Default or Uncontested Dissolution or Legal Separation (FL-170); and Notice of Entry of Judgment (FL-190). There are additional forms required if there are children or if one spouse is paying spousal support.
California requires a Final Financial Disclosure, but this require may be waived if there is a settlement agreement. After the couple files the settlement agreement, the court will review it to ensure it is fair and consistent with California law. If the judge approves the settlement, then it will become a court order. The court will mail a copy of the Judgment to both parties and the divorce will be final.
SD Esquire Flat Fee Divorce Service
SD Esquire provides flat fee uncontested divorce services. We will prepare the legal documents you need to file for and complete your divorce. This includes preparing and filling your divorce petition, completing your financial disclsoures, and drafting your marital settlement agreement (MSA). Our uncontested flat fee divorce service starts at $1500 for standard divorce (you are responsible for paying court filling fees). The fee also includes service of process fees. You can make installment payments as your case progresses. It costs $500 to start your matter. Sign up today to get started.