Online Divorce in Missouri

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Valid Grounds to Get a Divorce

The legal term for divorce in the state of Missouri is the dissolution of marriage. Missouri allows no-fault divorces. In other words, there is no need to prove and blame one of the spouses that he/she is responsible for the divorce. The only statement that partners need to declare is that marriage is irretrievably broken.

How to Get a Divorce in Missouri

Sometimes couples struggle too much to maintain their marriage. However, if things do not work, both parties’ best option is to file for divorce. The length and difficulties in the process of getting a divorce can depend only on the partners. If they can not overcome the issues they have by themselves, the process will last longer, and the third parties need to get involved in the process.

When the partners attempt to file for divorce, they need to understand some terminology. The spouse that files for divorce is the petitioner, and the respondent is the one who gets the documents and responds. Understanding the terms will be helpful when you file the divorce papers.

Without Children

The process of dissolving the marriage without children is less stressful than the one which includes children. If the partners are cooperative and have good communication, they can resolve all the divorce issues by themselves. In that way, the process will be quicker, and there is no need for court involvement. The main problem in these kinds of divorces is property division. The partners need to divide some debts and assets as well.

With Children

The main goal in the cases where the partners have kids is to make things as easy as possible for them.

The fact that their parents are getting a divorce is hard enough for the kids. For that reason, the kids need to be spared the stress about custody and family issues. Despite that, the child must continue with the life he/she had before the separation.

The parents need to establish an agreement about custody, visitation, and child support. If the parents can not do it by themselves, the court will do that for them. Despite this, if the child is old enough, his/her opinion will matter to the court.

Requirements for an Uncontested Divorce in Missouri

There are no specific requirements for conducting an uncontested divorce. It is always better for spousals to have good communication and cooperate and unite to solve the existing problems. In that way, they can finish the divorce process in the recent period. Once they settle the agreements about all the key terms in the divorce, they can deliver the forms to the court. The court will not have reason to conduct hearings, and everything will be over soon. The only requirement is that one of the spouses has been the resident for at least 90 days before filing for divorce.

Also, the partners need to watch or read a video for the Missouri litigant awareness program. There is a certificate of completing this program that you need to attach when you file the divorce documents. The program will provide essential information on how to protect yourself in the process of divorce.

In Annotated Missouri Statutes – Mo. Rev. Stat. 452.305 you can find everything about legal grounds for getting a divorce in the state.

What if I Have Contested Divorce?

In divorce cases where couples can not reach an agreement on every problem they have, they need to go to court. The first option that partners have is to go on meditation. Sometimes, this method helps spouses to reach a fair agreement between them. If this does not help, the spouses will need to hire attorneys and go to court.

After the hearing, the judge will make the final decision about their marriage. The process in these cases lasts longer.

Property Division in Missouri

Missouri is an equitable distribution state. That means the material property will be divided equitably and fairly. However, that does not mean that it will be necessarily equal.

There are some factors that the court will take into consideration when making the final decision about property division in Missouri.

The economic picture of both parties and each person’s property’s value is essential for the final court’s order. Also, the court will ask where the children live if the spouses have them. In that case, the person who gets the kids will get the house. The court will take into consideration the behavior of the partners as well. Once the court pronounces the final decision, the spouse’s property will be divided.

In Mo. Rev. Stat. § 452.330 you can see everything about property division in the state of Missouri and find more about different circumstances that have an impact on the final orders.

Michigan Divorce Papers and Forms

Before we start with the procedure about the list of necessary forms you need to fill, it is essential to understand specific terms. The petitioner is the person who files the divorce petition. On the other hand, the person who gets that document is the respondent. The petition for divorce primarily goes to the clerk. After he reviews the forms that you provided, he will tell you if you can represent yourself in the courthouse.

Anyway, the list of the forms that you need to fill will depend on different circumstances. We will highlight only the most common ones that need to be filled.

  • Default Request, Affidavit, Entry, and Judgment requests – Your spouse receives a copy of the Complaint for Divorce with the Summons. He/she has 21 days to complain. If he/she does not respond after that time, the court starts with defendant forms
  • Friend of the Court Case Questionnaire is the form for The Friend of the Court. That person investigates and gives the final recommendations on key terms after the divorce. For instance, all essential questions about the child’s life (child support, custody, and visitation), property division, alimony, and spousal support are included here.
  • The document of Complaint about Divorce starts the process of dissolving the marriage. This form includes all the basic information about spousals and their marriage.
  • The Marital Settlement Agreement is the document that both partners sign. If they sign it, they have settled the agreement on details and conditions of their separation, such as who will get the custody, who will pay for health care insurance, how the property will be divided, and the costs of alimony.
  • Judgment of Divorce is the form conducted when the terms of the Marital Settlement Agreement take over a court.

How to File Divorce Papers in Missouri

It is essential to submit the divorce papers in the county court where you or your partner have been a resident for at least 90 days.

There are separate judicial circuits, so you need to find the appropriate one for your case.

Once you find the appropriate local court, you need to submit your documents to the country clerk. First, make copies of the divorce papers because you will need to serve them to your partner. After you do that, you need to notarize the forms that you completed. The court where you submit the documents may also have a notary. If you are wondering how much they will charge you for the form fees, the answer will depend on the court. You can find form fees on the court website or to call the country clerk at your local court and ask.

File your Divorce Paperwork

  • Petition for Dissolution of Marriage – the main form that requires the ground for divorce. The Missouri state allows no-fault divorces. The only request is to cite that the marriage is irretrievably broken and there is no possibility of saving it.
  • Certificate of Dissolution of Marriage – this document will stay in the clerk’s office when your divorce is over as evidence.
  • Statement of Income and Expenses – the form which is necessary because, based on them, the court will give the financial orders
  • Statement of Property and Debt and Proposed Separation Agreement – the form where the partners need to state all details about material property and debts. Based on this document, the court can divide the property that partners had during the marriage.
  • Filing Information Sheet- form is required by the court to enter information about your case into the court’s system.
  • Parenting Plan – a form that partners who have children complete. That document contains all essential information about the child’s legal and physical custody.
  • Answer to Petition for Dissolution of Marriage – a form that is completed only by the respondent after he gets the divorce paperwork. He/she has 30 days to answer the divorce petition. If the spouse does not answer, the divorce will be considered a default divorce. In that kind of divorce, only the petitioner will be involved.

Serve your Spouse

Generally, the Sheriff will serve your divorce papers to your partner.

However, there is an option to hire some private service to finish the job. In both cases, they will charge them a certain fee.

However, you must serve the copies of your divorce documents to your partner. When your partner gets the documents, he/she needs to complete the Answer form.

The state of Missouri has 46 circuit courts. Through the Missouri Judicial Branch website, you can locate your local Missouri circuit court.

Financial Disclosures

Generally, both partners need to complete a document called Statement of Income and Expenses. When the court has an insight into this form, they can see all the essential information about the spouse’s financials. All incomes, expenses, assets, and debts are included here. The Judge will use this form to make financial disclosures regarding alimony and child support.

How to Serve Divorce Papers in Missouri

Missouri has different Family courts. For that reason, it is essential to file your divorce papers in the right location. Some courts work with dissolution procedures and cases that include children. If you are a petitioner, you need to file your divorce case in the Family Court that is located in the state where your or your partner resides.

How to Get a Divorce in Missouri Without a Lawyer

The decision to get a divorce is sometimes very stressful.

You need to start your life from the new beginning and to move on. However, if things do not work between the partners anymore, the best decision is to file for divorce. In the situation where you reached this point and want to end your marriage, the best option is to take into consideration all the options you have and make things as easy as possible. The good thing is that Missouri allows no-fault divorces and makes the process easier.

There is an option to conduct a divorce without hiring a lawyer. Using an online divorce paper preparation service, you can easily complete all the forms by yourself. A step-by-step guide that these services have will help you submit all the right forms for your case. Also, they will help you fill them correctly and in detail.

File Missouri Divorce Papers Online

As you see, beginning your divorce process online has many benefits. You can complete all the forms and be guided through the process of divorce with the online method. You can ensure that you will fill all the forms correctly. Not only that you do not need to hire a lawyer and spend so much money on him, but you will also spare yourself from stress about collecting all the necessary documents. From the comfort of your chair, you can file your divorce paperwork today.

Do you qualify?
Complete a free check to see if you're qualified for an online divorce.
Do you know the location of your spouse?
Is your spouse in agreement regarding this divorce and willing to sign the divorce papers with you?
Do you and your spouse have any children under the age of 18 from this marriage?
I agree to the Terms & Conditions

Common Questions about Divorce

How much does a divorce cost in Missouri?

The costs will vary from the circumstances in your case. For instance, if the partners handle their divorce by themselves, they can save lots of money because they don’t have to hire an attorney. On the other hand, if the partners can not reach an agreement about the key terms in their case, they will need to pay costs for attorneys.

How long does it take to get a divorce in Missouri?

The period for getting the divorce will depend on different factors in your case. The minimum period that you need to wait to get the divorce is 30 days. However, it can take longer. Some cases last from 6 months to even a year if they are complex, and the spouses do not want to be cooperative.

How can I get a copy of my divorce in Missouri?

The court clerk will give you a copy when you file for divorce.

Do my spouse and I need to live in Missouri to get a divorce?

The Missouri divorce process requires that you or your partner live in Missouri for at least 90 days before filing a divorce petition. If you try to avoid the residency requirement and file your divorce papers before you have lived in the state for 90 days, a judge can throw out your case.

Can I still get a divorce if my spouse does not want to get one?

If you are a petitioner, you need to serve the documents to your partner. He/she must submit the Answer document to the court. The respondent has 30 days to answer after he gets the divorce papers. If the respondent does not file an answer, the court will enter a default judgment against your partner, allowing the divorce according to the terms you listed in the petition.

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