While the concept of going through a divorce can be very difficult personally, filing for one doesn’t need to be. Most people consider it to be a mystery and justifiably so since no one wants to be involved in a divorce. But if you are reading this now, you or someone close to you is probably going through the troubles of a Divorce. We deeply empathize with your sorrow and wish you all the best. Besides our best wishes, we also have some valuable tips to offer you that will ease the online process of filing for divorce in Washington. In this article, we will try to clarify the norms of residency requirements, dissolution grounds, and property division that go along with Divorces.
Divorces in Washington
The divorce process can be a very frustrating and stressful one. But if your marriage was even more stressful, then you will be relieved when the entire process is over. The complications of getting a divorce can easily get you in over your head. First, you will face emotional complexities. You will have to come to terms with the fact that you are getting divorced, which will be emotionally challenging. Once you have overcome that, you will need to face logistical, financial, and legal issues. Of course, you will need to resolve them, but to settle it quickly and with less hassle, you will need all the available information on your side.
Filing for Divorce Online
In recent years, an increasing number of couples are getting divorced online. If the divorce is uncontested, then going online might be the best way forward. Multiple organizations provide online forms for filing for divorce. Many websites will even prepare your forms based on the information you provide. Some people hire attorneys or paralegals to review their papers. Others opt for the DIY process, where you fill out all the forms yourself. No matter which option you choose, the forms need to be filled out correctly.
Many states allow filing for divorce online, and Washington is one of them. It has specific requirements for filing a divorce, so it’s imperative that you review the state’s website before e-filing for divorce. In many cases, you might also have to hire an attorney despite filing for divorce online.
Essential tips for filing for divorce online
Make sure your divorce is an uncontested one.
Online divorce can only be filed when the divorce is uncontested. So you and your spouse must agree about filing for Divorce and the terms and conditions of the divorce. You must settle all issues amicably, such as visitation, child support, custody, spousal support, division of assets and property, and debt division.
A contested divorce brings more complications to the table. So filing for an online Divorce wouldn’t really be possible if it is a contested case.
Fill out all the necessary paperwork correctly.
Your court’s website will provide you with all the necessary papers and forms that need to be completed. But it can be a tricky proposition. You must prepare the forms properly. Different states provide a different set of forms that need different preparations.
Also, remember to include all details regarding your divorce in the Divorce papers. Ensure that you put all the relevant and necessary information such as names, social security numbers, location and date of marriage, etc. You must include the proper grounds for divorce as well.
If it’s a no-fault divorce, then your Divorce paper must highlight it. If you can fill all the paperwork online on your own, then that’s great for you. If you can’t, then do not hesitate to get professional help.
Clarify all details regarding property dissolution
Property dissolution is legally dividing all the properties and debts between you and your spouse. When opting for an uncontested divorce, make sure you know all the details associated with property dissolution. Both you and your spouse will keep all the property that you acquired individually before marriage or by inheritance. All other property is considered community property. You can negotiate an agreement with your spouse for the division of property to present to the court. Or the Judge will be in charge of dividing all community property after considering the following factors.
The extent and nature of the community property;
Duration of the marriage;
The economic situation of both parties;
The extent and nature of separate property;
And any other relevant factors.
While filling your application for divorce online, make sure you are fully aware of the terms of your property dissolution. Do not rush into the process before being fully informed and knowledgeable about it. You can always consult a county clerk at any Washington courthouse for further advice on this matter.
Settle the Child custody and support issue
If you have any minor children of the marriage, then the divorce will impact them as well. But what must never be affected is their financial support. It is instrumental in securing a healthy future unaffected by the hassles of a Divorce. You and your spouse should make a well informed and discussed decision regarding how the children will be supported subsequently. The Washington Child Support guidelines might be able to help you out in this regard.
But primarily, you have to decide on the custody of your minors. Washington law has evolved significantly and has introduced concepts such as a parenting plan and residency and a decision making authority into their Divorce laws. It all boils down to effectively determining the amount of time the children will spend with each parent. You would also need to ascertain how and who will make decisions impacting the children’s future.
How to make this decision?
This is where having a well-chalked out parenting plan helps. Both parties have to file a permanent parenting plan. You can also file for a joint parenting plan provided both parties agree on it. If you cannot agree, the court will hold a settlement conference before a court commissioner to attempt to settle the issue. If the conference fails to resolve the issue, then the Judge will decide as per the guidelines. If you and your spouse can come up with a joint plan, then everything’s better off. Otherwise, proposing an effective parenting plan for yourself is imperative in this regard.
Don’t listen to every piece of advice given by Divorced people.
Once you find yourself on the path to filing a Divorce, you might find many who have walked down that path before. Many of them will be keen to offer you valuable advice. People who have gone through an experience have a natural urge to let others know about their expertise on that matter. But when the subject is as sensitive as a Divorce, some or all of the advice might be misleading.
Every divorce is subjective to the people going through it. The set of issues are seldom the same. Many think that whatever they have gone through during their divorce will happen to you too. Hence, their advice may not be of much relevance to you. Therefore, making decisions based on someone else’s divorce experience isn’t such a great idea. If you need advice while getting a divorce, it is better to hire an attorney or consultant. Professional advice is always welcome as it would provide valuable insights into your case. That is not usually the case for well-wishers who have gone through their divorce earlier.
Focus until you have finalized the divorce
Online divorce companies such as https://divorcewashingtononline.com/ might inform you that they have filed your Divorce papers and that you can relax, but you never really can. The process goes on for a while, even after the documents are filed. So it is better to stay alert until the very end. You must ensure that you follow the court schedule sincerely and the schedule suits both of you. Make sure you answer every question from the Judge properly. Do not show any disrespect towards your spouse throughout the hearing. Once you have reached a fair settlement agreement and the Judge is satisfied with your consistent answers, he will sign the divorce papers. Then you have finalized your complete divorce online. Do not take it easy until then.
Filing an application for divorce online in Washington might not appear as convenient as it sounds, but it can be. With the help of the right divorce companies, getting a divorce over the Internet shouldn’t be a problem. Keep in mind the above tips and try applying them as much as possible.
Chrissy Ryland - I'm a freelance writer and blogger from Northern California. I grew up loving all things entertainment and travel and now I am blessed with a career that lets me write about both of those topics along with many others. For inquiries about a story you think I might want to cover, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org