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Can you file for divorce without going to court?

On Behalf of | Feb 27, 2024 | Divorce

With worries of prolonged and costly trials, many divorcing spouses wonder whether they could formally end their marriage without having to go to court. Generally, parties cannot finalize a divorce without some sort of court involvement. Nonetheless, it is possible for separating spouses minimize time spent in court under certain circumstances.

Pursuing an uncontested divorce

When both spouses agree on all the issues surrounding the divorce, including the division of marital properties, spousal support, child custody and visitation, among other relevant matters, they can pursue an uncontested divorce.

This type of divorce still requires parties to file a petition to dissolve the marriage. Nonetheless, parties can generally skip the series of trials as long as they submit to the court a settlement agreement of all the divorce issues. With this, the court will still be involved in the process. However, it will simply review the validity and fairness of the agreement before signing off the settlement terms.

Ways to pursue this type of divorce

Divorcing spouses who want to skip court appearances can opt for nonlitigation methods, such as mediation or collaborative divorce, to end their union. While both have notable differences, they both share a goal to develop a divorce agreement divorcing spouses can submit to the divorce court.

Seeking guidance before making a move

If you are considering filing for an uncontested divorce, it is advisable to consult with a divorce lawyer who is familiar with the laws in your state. They can provide guidance on whether it is possible to reduce court involvement in your particular situation.