getting divorced in washington without a lawyer how long does it take

by Elmer Denesik 5 min read

An uncontested divorce in Washington can take an average of three months from the filing to completion. However, a contested divorce can take up to twelve months or more. It all depends on the complexity of the situation, especially the marital assets. An uncontested divorce is fast and can be completed without an attorney.

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How long does a divorce take in Washington State?

May 26, 2020 · A divorce can be finalized as soon as 90 days following the filing of a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage in Washington State. However, there are many reasons why it may take longer. The process isn’t always straightforward and simple, as there are typically a number of issues that require resolution. 90 Day Cooling Off Period

What if I’ve never filed for divorce in Washington State?

Jan 29, 2021 · An uncontested divorce in Washington can take an average of three months from the filing to completion. However, a contested divorce can take up to twelve months or more. It all depends on the complexity of the situation, especially the marital assets. An uncontested divorce is fast and can be completed without an attorney.

What are the most common legal questions during a Washington divorce?

Technically, a divorce in Washington State can be finalized 90 days after the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage is filed and is signed by both spouses (or is signed by one spouse and served to the other spouse). However, many divorces take longer than 90 days to finalize due to a number of different factors.

How long does it take to file for a no-fault divorce?

It is very understandable that most Washington State residents want their divorces to be finalized as quickly as possible so that they can move on to their new lives. However, the time that it takes to complete the divorce process will vary considerably depending on the details of your marriage. A divorce can take as little as 90 days in Washington State, though this timeframe is usually …

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What is the fastest way to get a divorce in Washington State?

Below are the four basic steps in getting an uncontested divorce in Washington State:Complete divorce forms. The divorce process begins with the divorce form or petition for divorce. ... File divorce papers with the court. ... Serve your spouse with the divorce papers. ... Sign and file final divorce documents.

How long after divorce papers are signed Is it final?

When Is a Divorce Final? Your divorce is final on the day the court signs the divorce decree. You normally will receive it a few days later, since it is sent to your attorney, who will then send you a copy. You are legally divorced as of the date the decree is signed.

How do I know if my divorce is final in Washington state?

Your divorce is final when the judge in your case signs the final decision and the clerk files the signed decision. However, it is important to understand that even then, your spouse could file an appeal, request a new trial, or otherwise continue the divorce process further.

How long does a divorce process take?

So in case of divorce by mutual consent, it usually takes 18-24 months. In case of a contested divorce, the period is longer, ranging from three to five years because of complications and possibility that either party can challenge the decision in the High Court and Supreme Court.Jan 27, 2020

How long does it take to get divorced in Washington?

Technically, a divorce in Washington State can be finalized 90 days after the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage is filed and is signed by both spouses (or is signed by one spouse and served to the other spouse). However, many divorces take longer than 90 days to finalize due to a number of different factors.

What are the issues with divorce?

Here are just a few issues that could delay your divorce process: 1 Child custody or child visitation issues 2 Child support or spousal support issues 3 Divorce of property disagreements 4 Domestic violence issues 5 An uncooperative spouse 6 Divorce after many decades 7 Divorce involving complicated finances or a family business

How long does it take to get divorced in Washington?

An uncontested divorce in Washington State takes an average of three months to complete. Contrastingly, a contested divorce can easily take twelve months or longer, depending on the complexity of the marital assets.

How much does a divorce cost in Washington State?

On the other hand, a contested divorce in Washington State costs an average of $20,000 per party (mostly due to attorney fees). This shows the vast difference between the two and the money you can potentially save when filing for an uncontested divorce.

What is alimony in divorce?

Alimony or spousal support (if required) Division of all joint assets. Division of all debt accrued during the marriage. All other issues pertaining to your marriage. If you can’t agree on any of these issues, an uncontested divorce will not work and you’ll need to go through the process of a contested divorce.

What is the role of an attorney in divorce?

This usually happens when one spouse seeks the advice of an attorney to file the uncontested divorce papers. Although they are acting on behalf of one spouse, both eventually benefit since all legal work is taken care of.

Can a couple with no children get an uncontested divorce?

The best candidates for an uncontested divorce are a couple with no children, few assets to split, who have an amicable relationship. In this case, there are fewer issues to resolve to make the divorce final. However, this doesn’t mean those with children and substantial assets cannot get an uncontested divorce.

Can you file divorce jointly?

If you and your spouse agree on the divorce from the very beginning, you can also file jointly. In this case, one spouse must still be the petitioner and the other the respondent. The difference is you’ll need to fill out the joinder section of the petition.

Is it hard to file for divorce?

Filing for a divorce, even an uncontested one, is an emotional and stressful process. Doing it alone can feel like a huge burden, but having an attorney you trust to help you through the process takes away some of the stress and lets you focus on more important life choices like finding a new place to live or spending time with family.

How long does it take to get divorced in Washington?

How Long a Divorce Takes. A divorce in Washington takes at least 91 days. Washington has a 90-day cooling-off period preventing people from getting quick divorces during brief fits of anger. Do not expect YOUR divorce to be over in 91 days.

What happens if you can't reach agreement on divorce?

If parties cannot reach agreement, they go to trial, where a judge decides the terms of the divorce. Only about 5% of cases make it this far. Most cases settle earlier in the case, often at mediation. Trial can be extremely expensive, typically costing as much in attorney fees as the rest of the case combined.

How does a divorce petition work?

The process begins by one party filing a divorce petition. The petition is the document that says the petitioner wants a divorce. Most petitions are basic documents putting the other side on notice of the case. The petition is filed with the court along with supporting documents and served upon the other spouse, called the respondent.

How long does it take to get a temporary order for divorce?

Given that the average divorce takes about a year, parties often need or want temporary orders that stay in place until the process ends. These temporary orders can address countless topics. Typical ones include who gets to live in the home, a temporary parenting plan, temporary child support, appointing a Guardian ad Litem (see Practice Tip 2.1 below), temporary spousal maintenance, requiring a spouse to find work, and temporary attorney fees. Either party can file a motion for temporary orders at any time, but the petitioner commonly does it at the beginning of the case. The first person to file the motion for temporary orders gains a procedural advantage over the party responding to the motion, so many petitioners take the first opportunity.

What is discovery in divorce?

Discovery is the process of obtaining information and documents relevant to the divorce. Washington divorce litigants have many discovery devices at their disposal, meaning ways of getting information. The most common is a thick packet of requests called interrogatories and requests for production.

How long does it take to file a divorce petition in Washington?

When one partner in a marriage files a petition for divorce, the other party must file a response with the court. This must happen within 20 days if a respondent lives in Washington. If the person lives outside of Washing, then the deadline is 60 days.

How does marriage end in Washington?

Marriages or domestic partnerships in Washington can end through an annulment, legal separation or a divorce, also known as a dissolution of marriage. Washington is a no-fault state and one spouse or the other only needs to claim that a marriage is “irretrievably broken” to start the divorce process.

What are the legal issues in divorce?

Here are some of the most common legal questions and major issues that come up during a divorce in the state: 1 Assets and Debts (Property Division) 2 Spousal Support and Child Support 3 Custody and Visitation 4 Divorce Process 5 Other Divorce Issues

Is domestic violence a part of divorce?

Domestic violence can be a particularly ugly part of a divorce proceeding , and as such, law enforcement officials have strong safeguards in place when the appearance of domestic violence is present. Studies show that domestic violence is the largest single cause of injury to women in the United States, with an act of battery on a woman taking place every 9 seconds.

What is separate property?

Separate property is defined as an asset that was acquired before a couple was married or acquired after the date of separation. There can also be questions and challenges when one spouse receives an inheritance, which is considered separate property, but then proceeds to commingle it with community property assets.

Who is Jason Crowley?

Jason Crowley is a divorce financial strategist, personal finance expert, and entrepreneur. Jason is the managing partner of Divorce Capital Planning, co-founder of Divorce Mortgage Advisors, and founder of Survive Divorce. A leading authority in divorce finance, Jason has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, and other media outlets.

Is Washington a community property state?

Washington is a community property state. This means all income and property, real or personal, that was acquired by either party during a marriage is equally owned by each partner. It must be split equally in a divorce. There are some exceptions regarding separate property.

How long does it take to get divorced in Washington?

Washington has a mandatory 90-day waiting period before a divorce can be finalized. However, the time your divorce takes from start to finish will depend on what kind of divorce you choose. In terms of length, uncontested divorces are the best-case scenario and will take as little as 90 days to complete.

What does it mean when a divorce is split?

Bifurcation means that both parties in a divorce can legally declared as a single person while the other issues in their divorce are still being worked out. It does not affect things such as child custody, visitation, child support, alimony or other contentious issues that may have stalled or become major sticking points that are keeping the divorce from being finalized.

Can you get an annulment in Washington?

Annulment. Annulments are rare in Washington, but if you can prove your marriage is fraudulent or invalid, you may be able to have an annulment granted. This is also known as a Decree of Invalidity. When a couple is granted an annulment, their marriage is considered null and void.

Is Washington a no fault state?

Washington is a “no-fault” state. This means that the person filing for divorce does not need to prove that the other party did anything wrong. They only need to cite the “irretrievable breakdown” of the marriage as the grounds without going into any further details.

What happens if you don't agree with your spouse?

Litigation is an attorney-driven process. While the majority of cases settle before going to trial, that doesn’t mean litigation won’t wreak havoc on you and your kids.

Who is Jason Crowley?

Jason Crowley is a divorce financial strategist, personal finance expert, and entrepreneur. Jason is the managing partner of Divorce Capital Planning, co-founder of Divorce Mortgage Advisors, and founder of Survive Divorce. A leading authority in divorce finance, Jason has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, and other media outlets. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst, Certified Financial Planner practitioner, and Certified Divorce Financial Analyst. You can email him at jason@survivedivorce.com.

Can a spouse be separated if they are no longer working?

When a marriage is no longer working and one spouse moves out of the home, couples may consider themselves separated. While this is physically the case, they are not legally separated, and there is a big difference between the two.

How long does it take to get divorced in Washington?

The Minimum Waiting Period for a Divorce is 90 Days. Divorces don’t happen overnight. In Washington, the minimum length of a divorce case is three months. The clock begins when the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage is filed and served to the non-filing spouse. It is common for divorce in Washington to take up to 6 months or longer.

How is alimony determined?

Alimony awards are determined on a case-by-case basis as agreed upon by the spouses or according to the discretion of the court. The courts take several factors into account when determining whether alimony is appropriate, including the length of the marriage, the income and earning capacity of each spouse, the age and health of each spouse, and more.

What is considered marital property?

If it was acquired during the marriage, chances are it will be counted as marital property.

Can a marriage be dissolved in Washington?

In order to file for a dissolution of marriage , a couple must have a valid legal marriage. Common law marriages are not seen as valid marriages and are therefore not subject to divorce. However, Washington does recognize committed intimate relationships, where a couple lives together in a marital-like manner, which can be dissolved in court similar to a marriage.

How long does it take to get divorced in Massachusetts?

Massachusetts. 180 days. The hearing date is usually mailed to you 2-4 weeks after filing for divorce. Thirty days after the hearing, a Rule Nisi Divorce Judgment is entered, but the Final Judgment is not signed by the Judge until 90 days after that.

What is the waiting period for divorce?

A mandatory waiting period, also commonly referred to as a "cooling off period," is the amount of time that must pass before your divorce can be filed or, in some states, before it can be finalized.

How long after divorce can you remarry?

Also, neither spouse is allowed to remarry except to each other until 60 days after the divorce is finalized. You must wait 30 days filing to finalize your divorce. You must wait 60 days after your spouse is served with divorce papers to finalize the divorce.

What is separation period?

A separation period, on the other hand, is the amount of time that the spouses must be separated before getting a divorce. In some states, the separation period must be met before the divorce can be filed, while in others, it just needs to be met before the divorce can be finalized.

How long do you have to wait to get divorced in Colorado?

You must wait 6 months +1 day after the date your spouse was served with divorce papers to finalize your divorce. Colorado. 90-120 days. You must wait 90 days from the date the divorce was filed or the date your spouse was served, whichever comes later, to finalize your divorce. Connecticut.

How long does it take to get a no fault divorce?

The grounds for no-fault divorce require that the relationship between the spouses has broken down irretrievably for a period of at least six months before the divorce can be filed.

How long does it take to get divorced in Rhode Island?

90-120 days. You must wait 90 days from the date the divorce was filed to finalize your divorce. Rhode Island. 150 days. The hearing to finalize the divorce cannot be held sooner than 60 days from the date the divorce was filed. The divorce is finalized 90 days after the judge signs the Final Judgment at the hearing.

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