If you cannot afford to pay a lawyer to process your own divorce, that doesn't mean you can't get your divorce. Filing for a divorce pro se, means you will represent yourself. Believe me, it's a scary thought to be in front of a judge, your life in his hands and at his mercy. These are the tips from my own experience.
Call the court house and let them know you are going to process your own divorce pro se without a lawyer. They will send you court paperwork with all the instructions as well.
While you're waiting for the paperwork, begin taking notes on what you would like in distribution from the divorce. You will not want to leave out the details. For instance, if grandma gave you that gold wedding ring, make sure it is mentioned as your heirloom. Equal distribution is decided between the two parties. Unless it's a house or something really valuable, most judges will not put up with a lot of heirlooms things, it is just equal distribution. So, it may be counted as part of the equal distribution.
Begin filling out your paperwork when it arrives. Set time aside to work whole heartedly on putting together this paperwork.
Make sure you follow the paperwork to the very last instruction and exactly as the court states it must be done. If you don't, it will be sent back to you. Once you complete the statements in the documents, you will have to get together the CIS (Case Information Statement). Some states vary and may have other paperwork requirements as well.
Make copies of everything. The court instructions will tell you how to attain an actual court date for your paperwork. It will either be posted online or you may have to call to get what date your case will be heard. The courts will require at least two copies and one copy will be sent to the other party. Make sure you keep a copy in a safe place for yourself for court day.
When your court date arrives, be on your best behavior. Dress as your lawyer would dress is my advice. Don't chew gum, and don't interrupt. Do not make faces, as certain judges really hate this. This includes rolling your eyes. If you act civilly, you will be treated much better. Present your case in as professional way as you can. Do not react to the other side unless questioned by their attorney or the judge. Be willing to give but not the shirt off your back.
*This is not recommended if you have a child custody battle.
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