Filing for Divorce: A Guide to Online Divorce

About 66 percent of married couples say that companionship is the primary reason they made the decision to get married. Unfortunately, not all married couples remain companions for life. Across the world, many marriages are breaking up, with divorce a common occurrence today.  COVID-19 has only made matters worse, with a spike in divorces reported as a result of the pandemic. Divorce can be devastating both emotionally and financially for the parties involved. 

To help reduce the toll that a divorce can have, more couples now opt for uncontested divorces. Many choose the online divorce approach to make things even easier, faster, and more convenient.  But exactly what is an online divorce? How do you know if it’s right for you? More importantly, how can you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse divorce online? 

This guide tells you all you need to know. Keep reading to learn more. 

What Is an Online Divorce?

An online divorce refers to a divorce in which a couple uses an online service to complete the steps of a divorce. In this case, the separating couple feels out the required legal paperwork over the computer. 

The online divorce papers a separating couple fills out specify the usual terms of a regular divorce. That includes terms stipulating child custody, division of assets, spousal support, and other matters relating to the separation.

Typically, online divorces are available only through a legal third party. These platforms usually charge a fee for their services, although you may still be able to get free online divorce papers with a little bit of research.

Keep in mind that online divorce can only work if the divorce is uncontested. That’s because the process requires both parties to cooperate and have mutually aligned goals.

Just like other types of divorce, online divorces are entirely valid and legal. The paperwork you fill out is legally binding and will lead to a dissolution of your marriage. The paperwork will be reviewed by a judge before a final divorce decree is issued.

Why Consider Divorcing Online?

There are many reasons couples looking to end their marriage now opt for online divorce.  When marriage troubles have been the source of your chronic migraine, and you want to get out quickly, quietly, and painlessly, online divorce is the perfect option.

An online divorce affords you incredible flexibility in terms of time and schedule. Moreover, this type of divorce has the reputation of being much faster and affordable compared to a traditional divorce. As long as you and your future ex-spouse are on the same page, you can get things finalized quickly and conveniently.

What Are the Steps in an Online Divorce?

Most couples who want to divorce amicably don’t know how to go about the process, including how to file for divorce online. Here are the steps that a typical online divorce follows.

Create Your Account

Every online divorce service will ask you to create a user account as the first step of your divorce proceedings. This account is password-protected. 

You’ll be asked some basic questions to confirm whether you’re eligible to use the online divorce service. 

Enter Required Information

Once you’ve created your account, you’re required to complete divorce paperwork on the platform. Expect to provide details regarding children, property, and financial situations, among other topics.  

While it takes just about an hour to complete the divorce paperwork, you may need more time to research and collect the required information. Endeavor to make as detailed foreclosures about essential issues as possible.

Once you’ve filled out the paperwork, review it carefully to make sure there aren’t any mistakes.

Generate Your Forms

As soon as you’ve reviewed the paperwork and ascertained that all information you’ve provided is accurate, it’s time to generate the forms. The online service will usually do this for you, giving you a completed version of the forms that you need to file. These forms include your marital settlement agreement.

The service you’re using will direct you on where and how you need to sign before submitting your forms to the court.

File the Divorce Forms With the Court

Where you’re the one filing the divorce paperwork, check the detailed instructions provided by the online service you’re using on how to do it correctly.

In most states, different sets of forms are required to be filed at different times. Your online service will direct you on which forms to file when.   

Serve Your Spouse With the Divorce Paperwork

Even though yours is an uncontested divorce, divorce paperwork is usually filed by one spouse. You’re then required to serve your spouse with the divorce papers. In some cases, the other spouse may opt to sign a waiver of service form so that you aren’t obligated to serve the divorce papers formally.

Judicial Review of the Divorce Paperwork

Once the court has received the paperwork, they’ll review it to determine whether everything is in order. If you hired a reputable online divorce service, the chances of the court rejecting your paperwork are slim. In case the court finds certain errors in your paperwork, they’ll ask you to make the necessary corrections before moving on to the next step.

Wait for the Court to Finalize Your Divorce

Once your divorce paperwork is reviewed and deemed by the court to be in order, all you need to do is wait for things to be finalized. Note that the waiting time may vary significantly depending on your state or country. Ask your online service for an estimate of the amount of time you’ll need to wait before your divorce is final.

Once everything is finalized, ensure you get a copy of the divorce decree for your records.

An Online Divorce Is a Convenient Option for Separating Couples

If divorce seems like the best option for your marriage, it’s best to choose an approach that’s as painless for you and the children as possible. An online divorce can provide that option. Not only does this approach save time and money, but it also ensures matters are handled in a convenient and drama-free fashion.

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