Hawaii Divorce Procedures

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Divorce cannot only be reduced to a sad phase in anyone's life. Nobody chooses a life-partner thinking that one day they will have to lose the partner. Circumstances worsen when things gets complicated by unnecessary conflicts and legal proceedings. If you are in a similar situation, you must take some steps, in order to obtain a successful divorce The primary step is to abide by all the rules and regulations as defined by the state divorce laws. In USA, all the 50 states have their unique statutes. Hawaii also has its own divorce laws, and it is mandatory for couples to follow the Hawaiian divorce procedures.

To have an idea of the divorce procedures in Hawaii, you can try finding online data regarding your case. This public service is executed by the State of Hawaii Judiciary. There are strict rules that a layman should not try to alter or delete this information, as such attempts are deemed unauthorized. This information can be removed only when the court passes orders to seal the case records.

Besides the online resource, you can also read some basic divorce procedures as mentioned below:

Significant points about Hawaii Divorce Procedures

  • All divorce procedures take place in the Family Court
  • One spouse has to file a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, requesting the court for the termination of marriage, by providing justified grounds
  • Although any one party does not wish for divorce, the other party can be granted one
  • If a couple was married in some other state in the United States or in altogether other country, the couple can be granted a divorce in Hawaii
  • Irrespective of whether a specific person is a legal resident of another state or country or is a military personnel stationed in Hawaii, it is mandatory that this person must have resided in Hawaii for minimum 6 months before commencing the divorce process
  • Usually, the divorcing partners do not feel the requirement of hiring a lawyer. However, if a lawyer is hired it would certainly prove beneficial
  • The divorce process generally required many months
  • It can impact your immigration status, if the following conditions are fulfilled:
    • The person is an alien on conditional status
    • The person is married to a citizen of the United States or a lawful permanent resident

Court Filing Fees of Hawaii Divorce Procedure

You have to pay a certain amount to the court which may vary from case to case. From July 1st, 2003, the following fees were made effective in this state:


  • 100 USD Initial Filing Fee
  • 25 USD Surcharge
  • 50 USD Computer System Surcharge
  • 50 USD Parent Education Surcharge

Restraining Order

  • No Initial Filing Fee
  • 15 USD for Motions. (This is applicable for Respondent only and the Petitioner is not charged any fee)

Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction

  • 15 USD Initial Filing Fee
  • 25 USD Surcharge
  • 50 USD Computer System Surcharge
  • 15 USD Motions

How the divorce proceeds?

The divorce process begins when all the forms are filed in the Family Court, by the Petitioner or the attorney of the Petitioner. In case there is a consensus between the divorcing partners regarding the terms of divorce, the case is categorized as an uncontested divorce. The staff conveys whether the judge has endorsed the forms or if any amendment is demanded. In case the judge approves the forms, there is no need for the divorcing couple to remain present in court as the case proceeds.

When there is a conflict amongst the divorcing partners regarding the terms of the divorce, the judge determines the outcome of the topics in conflict. Some of these issues are as follows.

  • Is it essential that one partner should pay alimony to the other?
  • Who would be responsible for the expenditure of the child or children?
  • The place of residence of the children
  • The payer and amount of child support
  • How the debts must be divided amongst the parties?
  • Division of property
  • Which divorcing partner should be granted custody and which has visitation?

Venues for procuring forms on different islands


Management Services Branch of Family Court
777 Punchbowl Street
Honolulu, Hawaii 96813-5093

Maui, Molokai and Lanai

Wailuku Circuit Court
2145 Main Street
Room 106
Wailuku, Hawaii 96793


Circuit Court, Hilo
Hale Kaulike
777 Kilauea Avenue
Hilo, Hawaii 96720-4212


Circuit Court, Lihue
3059 Umi Street
Room 101
Lihue, Hawaii 96766-1809

A fair idea about the Hawaiian divorce procedures will ensure that you know the subtleties of your case. By doing this you can be assured that you are not deprived of your legal rights.

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