Can I file for divorce without an attorney? 22 Answers as of February 27, 2011

My husband and I have only been married a little over 6 months and 4 of those months he's been living in a separate apartment. We own nothing together. We've tried marriage counseling and it has not helped. I just want out.

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Harris Law Firm
Harris Law Firm | Jennifer C. Robins
In the State of Oregon, you may file for divorce without an attorney. Most county courthouses have family law division or family law coordinators, who will assist a pro se litigant (a party without an attorney), fill out and file paperwork. Your state bar association will also be able to provide recommendations for attorneys in your area who would be able to assist you, if you feel you are unable to complete the process without an attorney. Many people proceed pro se in their divorces, especially if the other party agrees to the divorce and there is no issue regarding marital property, custody or parenting time of children.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 2/27/2011
Law Office of Michael E. Hendrickson
Law Office of Michael E. Hendrickson | Michael E. Hendrickson
Yes, you can file what's called pro se(representing yourself). Your local circuit court may have a packet of forms with instructions explaining how to do it.
Answer Applies to: Virginia
Replied: 2/25/2011
Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser
Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser | Donald F. Conviser
Your local Superior Court should have a self-help clinic to assist Pro-Pers in preparing documents to file for a Dissolution of Marriage. Call the Clerk of your local Superior Court to determine when and where that self-help clinic has available time and personnel to assist you.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/24/2011
Law Office of L. Paul Zahn
Law Office of L. Paul Zahn | Paul Zahn
You are not required to have an attorney for any legal action. That said if you are looking for assistance, I would be happy to help. Please contact me for a free consultation.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/24/2011
Bartholomew & Wasznicky LLP
Bartholomew & Wasznicky LLP | Hal D. Bartholomew
You may file without an attorney. This is called self-representation. In every County Courthouse there is an office called the " Family Law Facilitator." They are there to help people with the paperwork to process a divorce. You may want to consult with an attorney to see if you might be eligible for an annulment (Judgment of Nullity). If you are and it is granted by the court, it is an order saying that the marriage was null and void and therefore never occurred. Also there is a procedure called "Summary Dissolution of Marriage" that is available which is a quicker and less expensive method of getting a divorce. There are specific rules as to whether you qualify.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 2/24/2011
    Theodore W. Robinson, P.C.
    Theodore W. Robinson, P.C. | Theodore W. Robinson
    Yes, you can file without an attorney. Usually, that's the best way to do it when the divorce is uncontested and there are no children. However, if there is anything owned between you, then that must be worked out beforehand and that often can either take an attorney for each of you or a Mediator who will work with both of you and draft an agreement that will settle everything before you file for divorce. At least speak to a local attorney who handles divorce just to learn a bit more before you start the action. There are also Paralegals who will do the paperwork for you at a very reasonable rate for filling out the papers and filing them for you. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 2/24/2011
    Beaulier Law Office
    Beaulier Law Office | Maury Beaulier
    A lawyer is never required for a divorce. However, having a lawyer often means you will avoid costly errors that may be difficult to remedy after the fact.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 2/24/2011
    Steven D. Keist, Attorney at Law
    Steven D. Keist, Attorney at Law | Steven D. Keist
    Yes, the Court has a self-help area and forms available to help people.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 2/24/2011
    Law Office of Curry & Westgate
    Law Office of Curry & Westgate | Patrick Curry
    Yes you can file by yourself.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/24/2011
    Rhonda R. Werner Schultz, PL
    Rhonda R. Werner Schultz, PL | Rhonda R. Werner Schultz
    You can file your own divorce. The clerk of court in your area will have a packet of forms for sale for filing your own divorce.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 2/24/2011
    Lori C. Obenauf LLC
    Lori C. Obenauf LLC | Lori C. Obenauf
    Yes, you can. Many courts have forms for people that file for divorce "pro se" (on their own). Please be advised, however, that neither the clerks of court nor the Judge can provide you with legal advice and you are responsible for completing all of the forms and ensuring that they are filed correctly. Whenever there are children involved, or if the parties have property to be divided or debts to be allocated, I recommend that the parties engage attorneys.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 2/24/2011
    Law Office of Richard B. Kell
    Law Office of Richard B. Kell | Richard B. Kell
    Absolutely. As long as your spouse is willing to cooperate, I highly recommend that the two of you file a Joint Petition for Divorce. They are much cheaper and quicker. You can ask for the forms from your county's Probate and Family Court. Although many people still get an attorney to help fill them out properly. If he won't cooperate, however, you will have to file for a Contested Divorce. This can also be done without an attorney, but it will cost more, take longer, and can be a major pain. Even with no assets or children, you still may want to retain an attorney to help expedite the process. An uncooperative spouse can certainly drag things out for you if they want to. Let me know if you need any assistance. Best of luck.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 2/24/2011
    Cody and Gonillo, LLP
    Cody and Gonillo, LLP | Christine Gonilla
    yes there are forms that can assist you such as the one attached; and they are also available at your local courthouse. If you wish to discuss further please feel free to contact us. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: Connecticut
    Replied: 2/24/2011
    Goldberg Jones
    Goldberg Jones | Zephyr Hill
    Yes you can. Go to the court house and ask the Facilitators for the Summary Dissolution Packet and see if you can get your spouse to work with you.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/24/2011
    John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law
    John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law | John Kirchner
    Yes. You should check for information, instructions, and forms on the Colorado Supreme Court website Self-Help center at http://www.courts.state.co.us/Forms.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 2/24/2011
    Diefer Law Group, P.C.
    Diefer Law Group, P.C. | Abel Fernandez
    Yes. The law does not require that you use an attorney. You are able to file on your own.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/24/2011
    Diana K. Zilko, Attorney at Law
    Diana K. Zilko, Attorney at Law | Diana K. Zilko
    If you don't have any community property, and don't have children together, you can file for a simple divorce on your own. Check the self-help area in the courthouse in the County where you live.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/24/2011
    Arnold & Wadsworth
    Arnold & Wadsworth | Brian Arnold
    Yes you can. There are a bunch of good forms on the Utah Courts Website, or you could have an attorney review it for you and you could do a stipulated divorce where you agree to everything. Since there are no kids, and it sounds like no assets, your divorce should be pretty easy. If you have any questions please feel free to call us.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 2/24/2011
    William C. Gosnell, Attorney at Law
    William C. Gosnell, Attorney at Law | William C. Gosnell
    Yes you can but it almost impossible to get through it without a lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: Tennessee
    Replied: 2/24/2011
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