Summary dissolution

A Quickie Divorce?

We have all heard the horror stories: “my divorce lasted longer than my marriage” or “it dragged out for years.” Thankfully, if you have minimal assets and are searching for ways to streamline your divorce process you have a few options. One way to expedite the process is to proceed by summary dissolution. Summary dissolution has the same effect as a divorce, but has several benefits that a “regular” divorce does not. Notably, it’s a quick(er) and eas(ier)y process. Oftentimes, you do not even need to appear before a Judge.

If you meet the following 9 criteria, you and your soon to be ex-spouse, should consider filing for summary dissolution.

  1. Have been married for less than 5 years (from the date you got married to the date you separated);
  2. Have no children together born or adopted before or during the marriage (and you are not expecting a new child now);
  3. Do not own any part of land or buildings;
  4. Do not rent any land or buildings (except for where you now live with limited exceptions);
  5. Do not owe more than $6,000 for debts acquired since the date you got married (calling “community obligations”)*;
  6. Have less than $43,000 worth of property acquired since the date you got married (called “community property”)*;
  7. Do not have separate property worth more than $43,000;
  8. Agree that neither spouse will ever get spousal support; and
  9. Have signed an agreement that divides your property and debts.

*There are some exceptions to the calculation.

If you need help determining if you qualify or need assistance in reaching/preparing an agreement that divides your property, consider meeting with a Certified Family Law Specialist, even if only for a consultation. Alternatively, if you have already prepared your summary dissolution, consider contacting a lawyer to do a final review of the documents prior to submitting for filing. This can help having your documents rejected and ensure faster resolution. Good luck!

LGBTQ note: The summary dissolution process can dissolve your domestic partnership as well or if you are both married and domestic partnered, can dissolve both.

If you would like a quote on the cost for your summary dissolution of marriage, click here.


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