If you are planning to represent yourself in court for the upcoming divorce, you need to learn how to get a divorce without a lawyer. This process is known as Pro Se representation and you will be personally responsible for performing all the functions of an attorney in your case.
The possible reasons for not getting a lawyer to handle your divorce include:
- Financial concerns. Not being able to hire a quality lawyer —-
- Uncontested divorce. When the spouses have no marital assets or children, there is little reason for the services of attorney, as cases like that will usually go very smoothly.
- Dissatisfaction. Being dissatisfied with the way your present lawyer is handling your case can be a reason for learning how to get a divorce without a lawyer if you don’t want to go through the trouble of finding a new one.
Your state divorce laws will determine where and when you will need to file for divorce. Most states only let residents of at least 6 months to go through this process, but these terms can vary depending on the region. There are also certain residency requirements involved.
The original and two copies of your petition should be given to a court clerk in your city to be officially stamped with a date. After, that you can begin the divorce process by filing the document. People who want to know how to get a divorce without a lawyer should also be aware that there are court fees to be paid for this process. Find out what they are in advance or consider requesting a waiver with affidavit.
Spouses whose grounds for divorce are infidelity, desertion, abuse or other extreme cases, proper care should be applied to filing all of the documents. Make sure that you represent your case well legally and don’t let emotions cloud your judgment.
Use simple and concise language that is going to hold up in court, and don’t get too descriptive. Usually there’s an attorney there to handle this issue, but knowing how to get a divorce without a lawyer requires you to handle it yourself.
In a divorce case, the spouse who files for divorce is known as the Petitioner. The spouse who has been served the divorce papers is therefore the Respondent, required by law to respond to the petition within an allocated number of days.
You have the following options to serve your spouse:
- Do it yourself and have them sign a waiver that confirms it.
- Get a process server to do it for you with an official notice from court clerk’s office.
- Require posting or publication as means for serving the petition if your spouse is nowhere to be found.
As the process begins, it’s important that you learn the steps of the upcoming legal profcess. First, you’re going to file a notice of hearing for temporary orders, which will handle the financial and custody issues of your case. Secondly, there will be a date set for the final hearing and the Respondent must be notified. Lastly, you should prepare all the necessary documents to present to the court during discovery phase.
Finally, you will need to be aware of a few things once you defend your case before the court:
- Be polite.
- Dress appropriately.
- Do not interrupt.
- Properly address the judge.
- Refer to other people in the court as “Mr.”, “Ms.” or “Mrs.”
- Act nicely and accept any help from the judge in the legal process.
- Do not ask too many people to come with you to the court.
- Leave your emotions behind.