Uncontested Divorce in Washington

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Divorce implies a legal terminating of the marital bond to form separate existence of the partners. However, the way a married couple wants to get separated from each other completely depends upon how they want to deal with the case. They can fight in the court and make private issues public. Thus they can be turned into objects of laughter to the public. On the other hand, they can choose to part ways amicably while following the process of an uncontested divorce. The divorcing partners need to take decisions together regarding all the issues of the divorce thereby ensuring that the lives of their children are not hampered by their decision. Considering all these factors, many separating partners in many countries prefer an uncontested divorce. Washington in the Pacific Northwest region of the USA has chalked its own divorce laws. The requirements and procedures for an uncontested divorce in Washington are formulated by these state laws.

In Washington, divorce is referred to as Dissolution. The divorcing partner filing the action is named as the Petitioner. The other partner responding to the action is named as the Respondent. The Superior Court is the venue for filing the action.

Grounds and Residency requirements of Uncontested Divorce in Washington

Washington is a no-fault divorce state. In order to terminate any marriage, there is a singular ground that is "irretrievable breakdown of the marriage".

In this state, a divorcing partner can file for divorce only if is he or she is a resident of this state or a personnel of the armed forces who is stationed in this state.

Petition of the Uncontested Divorce

The petition consists of the following data -

  • Location and date of marriage
  • Date of separation of the partners
  • A statement explaining whether or not the wife is pregnant
  • A statement explaining the disposal of community property
  • A parenting plan, inclusive of visitation and child custody. This is essential if children are involved in the dissolution
  • A statement describing the relief that is sought

The statement of relief includes the following information -

  • A request for the dissolution of marriage
  • Division of property
  • Maintenance requested
  • Child support desired
  • Visitation requested
  • Residential arrangements for children
  • A request stating that the Property settlement that is appended to the Petition be sanctioned and included in the Decree of Dissolution

If the divorcing partners file a joint petition, then the Respondent has to sign a Joinder. This document bind the Respondent to the Petition. Sometimes it may happen that the Respondent agrees with the Petitioner for the dissolution, but does not agree with the terms and conditions of the Petition. In such a case, the Respondent has to sign an Acceptance of Service.

When children are involved in such cases, the Petitioner needs to attach a copy of the Parenting Plan. This plan mentions the terms and conditions of child visitation and child custody.

Other forms required in an Uncontested Divorce in Washington

The 90-day reconciliation period starts from the date of filing the Petition once the Joinder has been signed. During this reconciliation period it is essential in some counties that the divorcing partners remain present for a parenting seminar.

When the reconciliation period is over, the Petitioner must file in the following forms -

  • An Order of Child Support: As per this document, the payment towards child support as felt essential is ordered
  • Waiver of Rights under Service Members Civil Relief Act (SCRA) or a Declaration of Non-Military Service: This document serves as a proof of the fact that the Respondent does not get any protection from civil lawsuits under SCRA
  • A Final Parenting Plan: The terms and conditions of visitation and child custody are described in this form
  • Findings of Fact: This is a profile of the entire case
  • A Decree of Dissolution: This document is used to terminate the marriage

At the end the Petitioner has to appear at short hearing. The judge asks some necessary questions to them and grants the divorce.

The requirements of an uncontested divorce when the couple do not file jointly, are slightly different. It is best to agree with each other and resolve the conflicts as much as possible.

Studies reveal that more than 40% of the divorce cases are fought in an uncontested way. Gradually more and more people are opting for such divorces. You can go for an online uncontested divorce in Washington and save a lot of time. In fact many cases in the state are fought without court appearances. So you have to find out the requirements for such a divorce and then proceed with the case.

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