Not everyone needs a painful, drawn-out divorce.
If the breakup was fairly amicable and you’ve agreed who gets what, you and your partner may not want to “lawyer up” and take on the costs of hiring a full legal team.
In the case of an uncontested divorce, there’s a much simpler path to consider — filing for divorce online with the help of DIY services.
This probably sounds crazy. The thing is, online divorce has become rather common.
The internet has made it possible to do all sorts of things that used to be more difficult decades ago.
You can earn a college degree online, find your soulmate online, and even work from home with an internet connection, so why not use the internet to handle your divorce?
If you’re ready to file but want to make the process as painless — and affordable — as possible, you can save time, money, and hassle by considering websites that let you file for divorce online.
DivorceWriter.com is one company you’ll likely want to consider. Keep reading to learn more about how it works and who it’s good for.
Still struggling with finances during your divorce? Most people do! Read How to find quick, hidden money in divorce
How DivorceWriter.com works
According to DivorceWriter.com, their service is ideal for couples who have already agreed on how to divide their property as well as how any children will be raised.
However, every state has their own forms and procedures to follow in order to file for divorce.
As a result, each state is slightly different for filing for divorce.
How to file for divorce online using DivorceWriter.com
- Go to Divorcewriter.com and share basic information, including the state you live in.
- A consultant will call, and interview to go over your personal details and the state-mandated steps you’ll need to file for divorce in your state. The interview should only last 10 to 15 minutes and can be completed entirely online and from the comfort of your home.
- You receive all the documents required for divorce in your state. From the Petition to the Decree, everything you need to do to file for divorce and get it finalized is included in your package. This includes:
- All Required State Forms
- Settlement Agreement
- Spousal Support
- Name Change
- Child Support Calculator
- Parenting Plan
- State-Specific Filing Instructions
- Free Unlimited Revisions
While it may seem strange to file for divorce on your own, DivorceWriter.com says their stats show that 49% of petitioners and 90% of respondents represent themselves in divorce. DivorceWriter.com also claims that, since its inception in 2005, it has grown to become the largest divorce website in the United States.
It is also the only online divorce business with an A+ accreditation from the BBB as well as one of the lowest cost providers as of 2020.
The company not only has good ratings, but it has plenty of reviews. Users who have filed for divorce via the website’s tools have called it “less stressful,” “organized,” and “painless.”
Unfortunately, DivorceWriter.com isn’t available everywhere. While this service is available to settle uncontested divorces in most states and the District of Columbia, it is currently unavailable in Missouri.
Co-parenting goes on long after divorce. Learn more about how to successfully co-parent with your ex — even if you hate their guts.
Technology can help. A judge or attorney may mandate you use a co-parenting app like OurFamilyWizard or AppsClose. Learn more about the best co-parenting apps of 2020 — including free co-parenting apps.
How much does it cost to use DivorceWriter.com?
Divorce is notoriously expensive, but it no longer has to be. DivorceWriter.com charges the same package price for divorce whether you have children or not —$137.
Once you sign up for the program and get started, you will receive all the forms and instructions you need to file for divorce on your own provided your divorce is uncontested and you and your spouse have fully agreed on all terms.
After paying $137, your package will include:
- Complete All Required Forms Online
- State-Specific Forms for Every State
- Detailed Filing Instructions
- Settlement Agreement
- Name Change
- Spousal Support
- Child Support Calculation
- Custody and Parenting Plan
- Support by Email and Phone
- Unlimited Revisions to Your Forms
- Instant Email Delivery
- Free Printing and Priority Shipping
- 100% Court Approval Guarantee
While $137 is a steal, it’s important to note that court filing fees are not included in your package price. You’ll have to pay court filing fees separately and on your own, and these fees can vary a lot depending on where you live.
DivorceWriter.com accepts credit cards like Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American express, and also accepts debit cards. They also offer a 100% money-back guarantee in case your documents aren’t accepted by the court for any reason.
RocketLawyer allows you to buy legal documents like a divorce settlement or separation agreement for a flat fee of $39.99 per document. You can also buy 30 minutes with an attorney for $59.99. Learn more about RocketLawyer >>
CompleteCase provides all the divorce documents you need in your state, along with filing instructions, for a flat fee of $299. Check out CompleteCase now >>
Pros and Cons of DivorceWriter.com
Filing for divorce probably seems a little too easy, but that’s part of the allure. The reality is, an uncontested, amicable divorce that doesn’t require a legal battle isn’t that difficult to file. If you could get it done — and get it done right — without getting expensive lawyers involved, why wouldn’t you?
Still, nothing is perfect, and this includes DivorceWriter.com. Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of using this service and filing for divorce on your own:
Benefits of using DivorceWriter.com
- File for divorce online and from the comfort of your own home. You don’t have to visit a stuffy lawyer’s office or pay for professional help.
- It’s only $137. You will pay significantly less to file for divorce online — perhaps even thousands of dollars less.
- DivorceWriter.com has great reviews. They also have the industry’s only A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.
- Your divorce paperwork is tailored to be appropriate for the state you live in, meaning you’ll file the exact forms you need.
- You get a 100% money-back guarantee if the court will not accept your divorce paperwork for any reason.
Downsides of using DivorceWriter.com
- You won’t receive professional counsel or advice. If the terms of your uncontested divorce aren’t as good as they can be, you won’t have professional guidance to help you renegotiate.
- While DivorceWriter.com has a process that’s easy enough for anyone to complete, you’re still doing it on your own and without the assistance of a divorce lawyer.
- The fee you’ll pay for this company’s services doesn’t include court filing fees. Make sure to call your local court office to find out about other fees you may be responsible for.
Who should use DivorceWriter.com?
DivorceWriter.com is available in every state except for Missouri, which means that the vast majority of Americans could use this service to file for divorce online. However, this service is really created for a certain type of filer. You should use DivorceWriter.com if:
- Your divorce is uncontested. In other words, both you and your spouse have agreed upon all financial matters and arrangements involving the kids. If you and your spouse are arguing or you can’t agree on the terms of your divorce, this service is not for you.
- Your divorce is amicable. This does not mean you don't fight, or even that you don't hate each other. Amicable divorce means that you are both committed to a peaceful, fair and just breakup, and will not go to court or otherwise try to sabotage each other emotionally, financially or by way of the kids.
- Speaking of which: Note that the DivorceWriter.com package includes a parenting plan. Use this as a starting point to create a plan that works for your family. Back in the day, moms pretty much automatically got custody and dads were an afterthought. If that’s still your mindset, change it. Unless there’s a truly compelling reason to limit contact with the children's father, such as addiction or a history of violence, then he has rights the same rights you do, and 50/50 custody is becoming the norm. And not just the right to spend equal time with his kids, but also the right to be included on big decisions like education, religious and moral values, discipline, free-time activities and medical care.
- Your spouse is willing to sign the divorce papers. Make sure your spouse is on board with you filing for divorce online and willing to sign the paperwork before you move forward.
- You want to save money and time. Your divorce doesn’t have to be overly complicated or expensive. If you want to save time and cash, using an online divorce service is the way to go.
While DivorceWriter.com is the ideal service for some divorcing couples, it’s certainly not for everyone. As we already shared, you can only file for divorce online if your divorce is uncontested and all parties agree on all the terms. This can include things like how to split up your assets and debts as well as who will get custody of the children. These can be tricky details to negotiate, so it’s possible you’ll need to get a lawyer involved to strike a deal.
Also keep in mind that, if you are a same-sex couple, you may experience some hassle or discomfort filing for divorce online. DivorceWriter.com says that divorce forms need to be updated to reflect the legalization of same-sex marriage, especially when it comes to the use of gender-specific terms like “husband,” “wife,” “mother,” and “father.”
DivorceWriter.com notes that, based on their experience, courts will not reject your paperwork based on the fact the pronouns used aren’t appropriate for you or your partner. But that may not make the situation any less awkward.
There are also several situations that are too complex to handle with an online divorce — even if both parties have agreed to the terms. If you want to receive a portion of your spouse’s retirement plan, for example, you will likely need a lawyer to draft a QDRO.
The bottom line
If you want to file divorce with less headache and fewer bills, you should definitely consider using a service like DivorceWriter.com.
This company makes filing for divorce easy, and the entire ordeal can cost $137 outside of court filing fees.
You won’t have to deal with a lawyer or pay for the privilege of talking to one. Instead, you’ll handle it all on your own, which shouldn’t be that difficult if the terms of your divorce are fairly simple.
On the flip side, it’s important to remember that divorce can become complicated — especially when kids are involved.
If you’re worried you need professional help or advice to settle complicated custody or financial matters, you may be better off hiring a lawyer to handle your case.
Hiring legal counsel will obviously cost a lot more, but there are times when having a professional on your side is worth the added cost.
Other companies to consider:
Holly Johnson is a financial expert, award-winning writer, and Indiana mother of two who is obsessed with frugality, budgeting and travel. Her personal finance articles have been published in the U. S. News, Wall Street Journal, Fox Business, and Life Hacker. Holly is founder of of the family finance resource, ClubThrifty.com, and is the co-author of Zero Down Your Debt: Reclaim Your Income and Build a Life You’ll Love. Learn more about Holly here.