Important Washington Divorce Guidelines to File for a Divorce
Residency Requirements for a Washington Divorce Action
It is imperative that the parties satisfy the residency requirements first when filing for divorce in Washington. At the time of filing, either spouse must be living in Washington and are planning to stay as residents. If either of the spouses is in the military and is stationed or will be assigned in Washington for at least 90 days after filing and serving the divorce petition, they are also qualified.
Washington Grounds For Divorce
Washington is a no-fault State when it comes to divorce. If one spouse files for divorce saying the marriage is broken and is beyond fixing, it doesn’t matter if the other spouse doesn’t agree to it. The judge will grant the divorce 90 days after the divorce documents were filed, granting that all the requirements are met.
The respondent may argue about child custody, visitation, and support if a child is involved; alimony; and division of properties and debts.
Child Custody Law in Washington
In Washington, child custody policy dictates that the best interest of the child is best served by a parenting agreement that protects the general welfare of the child. Each parent must submit a proposed permanent parenting plan that is anchored on objectives that promote the child’s physical care and emotional stability; minimize the child’s exposure to the parents’ conflict which could adversely affect the child; provide for the child’ changing needs as he or she grows older; protect the child’s best interests.
The court encourages the parents to perform their responsibilities as parents through mutual parenting agreements rather than relying on judicial intervention. However, the court will not grant mutual parenting agreements if one of the parents is found to have been guilty of child abuse, domestic violence, abandonment, sexual and emotional offenses or threats to the child.
Guidelines for Washington Child Support
Washington child support standards take into account the parents’ gross income of and the needs of the child. There may be instances when the child needs special care depending on the child’s physical and mental health, which could require more financial and physical muscle for the divorcing parents.
Monthly support is determined with the application of the State’s standard guidelines, keeping in consideration the reasonable expenses in rearing the child and the income and earning capacity of each parent.
Where to file for a divorce?
The petitioner may file the Washington divorce papers in the Superior Court that has jurisdiction over the county where he or she resides.
For a fast and inexpensive divorce process, you can file Washington online divorce forms.
Refer to the “Divorce Requirements for Washington Residents” above and also review the best online divorce sites.
Before or after filing the Washington divorce forms, parties may decide if divorce mediation is what they need to make the proceeding less painful and traumatic. Some couples prefer mediation in resolving their own disputes but if they believe they can’t arrive at a win-win resolution, it is best that a judge decide for them in court basing on the merits presented.
Divorce mediation in Washington may be requested by the parties at any point within the period of the divorce proceeding.
Need information for a different state?
You may also visit the Washington Courts