1. Agree on All Terms
Both parties must agree on the division of assets and debts, child custody and support issues, spousal support (if applicable), and any other matters related to the divorce.
2. Gather Documents
Collect important financial records such as tax returns, bank statements, property deeds, life insurance policies, and more. This information is necessary for filing paperwork with the court.
3. File Forms
Complete divorce forms specific to California state law and files them with the local court with jurisdiction over your case.
4. Serve Papers
Serve divorce papers to your spouse or their attorney for them to receive a copy of the paperwork filed in court.
5. Get Hearing Date
After the papers are served, the court will set a hearing date to review the divorce documents.
6. Finalize Agreement
During the hearing, both parties must agree on all terms and sign final documents for them to be approved by the judge. These forms must also be filed with the court.
7. Wait for Judgment
The judge will issue a ruling on your case that legally ends the marriage and makes all terms of the agreement binding for both parties.
8. Finalize Divorce
After the ruling is final, both parties must complete and file additional paperwork with the court to legally finalize the divorce.