It is no secret that going through a divorce can be challenging. Not just emotionally. But financially too.
Yes, a divorce can not just drain your energy and time. But it can drain your savings too if you’re not careful.
But what if you don’t have much, if any money to spare? Can you still get a divorce?
The answer to that is yes. In fact, it may be possible to even get a divorce for free. Below we look at how to get a free divorce and give you an overview of the process.
Typical Divorce Costs
Most of the time, the process of divorce can cost you a lot of money. In 2021, the average cost of divorce was between $10,000 and $15,000.
Filing fees for divorce can range from $75 to over $400. The cost will depend on the state where you will file for a divorce.
And the average costs of a divorce lawyer will average somewhere around $250 per hour. That will vary a bit depending on where you live and the experience level of the attorney.
With all that said, let’s jump into how you may be able to get a divorce for free. Or if not free, at least one that is not that expensive.
How To Get A Free Divorce
The good thing is, states have an indigent divorce or fee waiver procedure for people who need a divorce but cannot easily afford one. This kind of procedure will allow you to file for a divorce and ask the court to waive all of the court fees included in the divorce.
The first thing you need to do is to get the divorce forms online. You can do this by checking the website of your local divorce or family court.
Their website will most likely have forms that you can download or print. Along with the divorce form, you can also ask for a form for a fee waiver.
Alternatively, you can go to the local courthouse and ask for the forms there. But before you can get your court fees waived for the divorce, you will need to show proof that you are unable to afford a divorce.
Documents You’ll Need
You need to show a proof of your:
- Income including:
- Social Security
- Child Support
- Disability Benefits
- Debts including:
- Credit Card Debts
- Utility Bills
- Tax info may also be requested
These documents will usually need to be notarized. Either your bank or the clerk can notarize them upon filing.
Your documents will be reviewed by the judge. Sometimes a hearing for this is needed.
Your fee waiver may either be approved by the court, or the court may decide to defer your fee. The latter means you can pay for the court fees later.
A DIY Divorce
Another way to get a low-cost divorce is a Do-It-Yourself divorce. You can be a good candidate for a DIY divorce for the following reasons:
- If the divorce is uncontested or there is an agreement on all the issues such as:
- Division of property
- Child custody
- Child support
- If both spouses are comfortable regarding the agreement, and if it is fair and reasonable
Another less expensive way of handling situations like this is through a divorce mediation. A divorce mediation means that a professional will put a closure to divorce issues.
This is especially great for people who are having difficulty agreeing on certain issues mentioned earlier.