How to File for Divorce for Free in Florida

By Tom Streissguth

The state of Florida requires that divorces begin with a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage. This sets the legal process of divorce in motion; eventually, the courts will hear the case and a judge will sign a final decree, at which point the divorce is complete and legal. Although the process can be expensive, state law provides for filing free of charge for those who qualify.

Step 1

Fill out and sign a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage. The petition must include your name and address, the name and address of your spouse, the grounds for the divorce, and information on any minor children of the marriage. Along with the petition, you must file a Financial Affidavit; you may also file a Marital Settlement Agreement at this time, although it is not required.

Step 2

Fill out and file a fee-waiver petition simultaneously with the divorce petition. A fee-waiver petition is a document that specifically requests that the filing fee, which varies by court, be waived by the clerk, and that you be allowed to file the divorce petition free of charge. As grounds, you must assert that you are indigent and unable to pay the statutory fee. The fee-waiver petition can also request of a waiver of the sheriff's fees required for service of the petition on your spouse.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More

Step 3

Prepare an Affidavit of Indigency, in which you list your assets -- money, property and other goods -- as well as any income you derive from wages or non-wage sources, such as disability, unemployment compensation or workers' compensation indemnity payments. Each court has a blank form you can use for this purpose; some clerks provide the form online. Sign and date the petition and have it notarized before filing it with the Petition for Dissolution.

Step 4

Attend a court hearing, if required by the clerk of court. At the hearing, the judge will review your paperwork and ask questions related to the Affidavit of Indigency that you filled out. You may have an attorney present. At the end of the hearing, the judge will either approve or deny the fee-waiver petition; if the petition is denied, you will have to pay the filing fee to the clerk before the clerk's office will process the divorce petition.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More
How to File for Divorce With No Money



Related articles

Steps for Filing Divorce in California

If you are seeking a divorce in California, you must follow the state's filing procedures and, in most cases, attend a court hearing. The state allows for "no-fault" divorce, meaning you do not need to supply specific grounds for the divorce. The state does impose residency requirements, however, as well as a six-month waiting period after the original petition is filed.

How to File Your Own Divorce Papers in Tennessee

In order to file for divorce in Tennessee, you must draw up the necessary papers, file them with a court clerk, have them served on your spouse and attend a public hearing on the matter. A marital settlement agreement is the key document that sets out the terms of the divorce and is incorporated into the court's final decree.

How to File for Divorce in Virginia Without a Lawyer

A divorce can be a complex, expensive and emotionally trying process. If there is a dispute between you and your spouse over child custody, property or support payments, the process becomes even more difficult and time-consuming. However, if you agree on the terms of the divorce, you may be able to carry out a legal divorce without the added expense of an attorney's time and advice.

Get Divorced Online

Related articles

What Is the Cost to File Divorce Papers in Louisiana?

If you are seeking a divorce in Louisiana, you must file a petition in the parish court and pay a filing fee. The ...

How Much Does it Cost to File Divorce Papers?

Fees and other costs are inevitably part of divorce. The fees vary by each state and county court; in addition, legal ...

How to Get Free Divorce Papers

An uncontested divorce is one is which both partners agree on all of the aspects of the divorce, such as the grounds ...

Divorce Process in Georgia

Georgia state laws govern the process of divorce. The state has adopted “no-fault” divorce, meaning you do not need ...

Browse by category
Ready to Begin? GET STARTED