Our 3StepDivorceTM Online Divorce for Alabama is offered with a peace-of-mind 100% guarantee.
We offer a 100% guarantee that the documents provided will be accepted by the Alabama courts to finalize your divorce.
In the event that the documents provided are not accepted by the Alabama court due to the fault of 3StepDivorceTM, you will be provided a 100% refund (with no handling fee).
Our support staff will always give each individual customer personal attention should they have difficulty. We have both e-mail and phone support. This being said, prior to issuing a refund, we reserve the right to meet any courts requests regarding changes to the documents.
Alabama Residency Requirements
When the defendant is a nonresident, the other party to the marriage must have been a resident of this state of Alabama for six months before the filing of the complaint for divorce. Complaints for divorce may be filed in the circuit court of the county in which the defendant resides, or in the circuit court of the county in which the parties resided when the separation occurred, or if the defendant is a nonresident, then in the circuit court of the county in which the other party to the marriage resides. The divorce is typically filed with in county in which the filing spouse lives. (Code of Alabama - Title 30 - Chapters: 2-4 and 2-5)
Alabama Divorce Grounds:
No-Fault: (1) Incompatibility of temperament that the parties can no longer live together. (2) Irretrievable breakdown of the marriage and that further attempts at reconciliation are impractical or futile and not in the best interests of the parties or family. (3) voluntary abandonment from bed and board for one year next preceding the filing of the complaint. (Code of Alabama - Title 30 - Chapters: 2-1 and 2-2)
Alabama Property and Debt Division
When the spouses do not agree to how their property is to be distributed, the court will do so in an equitable fashion. The court will determine what property is marital and after putting a value on this property, it will distribute a portion to each spouse. The court does not have the right to distribute any separate property that was obtained before or during the marriage. The separate property is, but not limited to gifts and inheritances, unless these gifts and inheritances have been used to benefit both spouses as a married couple. Marital misconduct may be a consideration by the court when distributing the property. (Code of Alabama - Title 30)
Alabama Spousal Support, Maintenance, or Alimony:
The court has the right to establish maintenance for either spouse in a divorce proceeding. In determining the appropriate amount, the judge, at his or her discretion. The judge will consider; the value of each spouse's estates as well as their families and up to 50% of any retirement benefits as long as the marriage was ten year or longer. The misconduct of either spouse may be considered in determining the amount; provided, however, that any property acquired prior to the marriage of the parties or by inheritance or gift may not be considered in determining the amount. (Code of Alabama - Title 30 - Chapters: 2-51, 2-52, and 2-55)
Alabama Custody and Visitation:
Upon granting a divorce, the court may give the custody and education of the children of the marriage to either father or mother, as may seem right and proper, having regard to the moral character and prudence of the parents and the age and sex of the children; and pending the action, may make such orders in respect to the custody of the children as their safety and well-being may require. But in cases of abandonment of the husband by the wife, he shall have the custody of the children after they are seven years of age, if he is a suitable person to have such charge. In all cases of voluntary separation of husband and wife, the circuit court has power, on the motion of either party, 20 days notice thereof being given to the other, to permit either the father or mother to have the custody and control of the children and to superintend and direct their education, having regard to the prudence, ability and fitness of the parents, and the age and sex of the children. (Code of Alabama - Title 30 - Chapters: 3-1)
Alabama Child Support:
When the parties cannot agree, the court will apply the state support guidelines which are presumed to be correct unless the court feels a deviation from the amount is appropriate. The court will deviate from the guidelines if the parties agree to do so or it believes it is necessary in order to establish an order that is in the best interests of the children. The parents are required to file an Income and Expense Affidavit along with W-2's to verify income. (Code of Alabama - Title 30 - Chapters: 3-1)
Alabama Forms: Our question and answer technology will allow you to easily complete your Alabama divorce forms for an uncontested divorce. Our goal is to give you full control and make "doing your own divorce", fast, easy, and affordable.Alabama Divorce Forms List
How Do I Know if I Should File in Alabama?
One would typically file for divorce in the state in which he or she or his or her spouse resides. If you have recently moved to a new state and wish to file in that new state, you may have to establish residency prior to filing.
If you are in the military and are stationed on a base outside your residency state, you typically are able to file in that state or in your residency state.
If you are in the military and are stationed overseas, you would typically file in your home residency state.
Can I Use 3StepDivorceTM if I Have Children?
Yes. The system and your documents will address all the issues regarding your children such as, but not limited to; custody arrangements, visitation and time-sharing, child support, and medical coverage.
How Much Are the Alabama Filing and/or Court Fees?
The filing and/or court fees are not included in our fee and typically range from $50.00 to $350.00 in total depending on your location of filing and whether or not you have children. The 3StepDivorce service will typically help you yield the lowest filing fee for you because both you and your spouse are in agreement.
How Long Will the Process Take in Alabama?
The process takes an average of less than 1 hour to answer the required questions and generate the documents. Once you file your documents with the court according the filing procedures, the length of time will vary depending on the number of cases in front of yours. Each court has only one or just a few Judges, Masters, or Referees to review all the pending cases.
Should I File or Should My Spouse File?
As a rule of thumb, for uncontested divorces, the spouse who really wants the divorce to be finalized typically does the filing.
Where and How Do I File My Documents?
The documents are filed at your local county courthouse in the family law or domestic relations division or department. Inside your account you will receive step-by-step filing procedures.
Can I Mail or Fax My Documents to the Clerk?
Many courts do permit you to mail and/or fax the documents. This will vary from county to county and state to state, so it will be best to check with the clerk at the courthouse when you are ready to file.
Do I Have to Go to Court in Alabama?
Depending on your state and your situation, you may or may not have to attend a short hearing. Most of the time when a hearing is required, it only lasts 10-15 minutes and only the filing spouse must attend. The hearing is where you will be granted your divorce and the judge will sign the final judgment or decree.
Do I Have to Also Hire a Lawyer?
3StepDivorce is designed for you to do your own uncontested divorce without hiring a lawyer. You will be acting as your own lawyer and filing for your own divorce. Should you need or desire legal advice or should your divorce become contested, we do suggest you hire the services of a lawyer.
Will My Name Also Be Changed?
The wife has the option to change her name back to her former or maiden name through the 3StepDivorce solution.
When is the Divorce Actually Finalized in Alabama?
The divorce is typically finalized when the Judge signs the final judgment or decree. We give a window of 30-90 days from the filing date, but this will vary due to case load at the courthouse and any mandatory waiting periods.
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A total of 148 people have started their divorce through 3StepDivorceTM in the last 24 hours and 1464 in the last 10 days. The streamlined and user-friendly process, instant document delivery, and unlimited free support makes us the go-to solution to do your own divorce. Our simple and inexpensive process provides you with all your completed divorce papers in as little as 20 minutes. Instantly access your completed divorce forms after a short online interview. It is that easy, no lengthy completion or delivery times.
This easy to use online divorce is a "do it yourself (without a lawyer)" solution for any uncontested divorce (with or without children) that will be filed in the state of Alabama. An uncontested divorce in Alabama is one in which you and your spouse are in agreement and eliminates the stress and expense of settling your divorce in court.
With 3StepDivorce TM you will complete and print your Alabama divorce forms (including a marital settlement agreement) instantly. Then, follow our step-by-step filing procedures to file your own divorce in Alabama in a timely, professional, and hassle free fashion. The online software is designed to give you full control of your divorce and also avoids the use of third party data entry, thus helping protect your personal information and privacy. If you're not ready to file for divorce in Alabama, learn more about getting your Separation Agreement .
Filing for divorce can seem overwhelming. Like starting almost any other legal proceeding, it takes finding the right forms, filling out the forms properly, and understanding the court’s requirements for the next steps you’ll need to take.
Traditionally, most people have hired a lawyer to take care of all the legal matters in their divorce. But more and more couples are turning to a much cheaper option that’s still easier than figuring out everything on their own: filing for divorce online.
If you want to know more, read on for answers to some of the most common questions about online divorce in Alabama.
Alabama 3StepDivorce™ takes care of the divorce paperwork for you. Once you sign up for the service, you’ll answer some questions about your situation. Based on your responses to the questionnaire, Alabama 3StepDivorce™ will fill out the forms the state requires to start the divorce process, along with instructions for adding any further information that’s needed. You’ll be able to print out the forms yourself immediately or, if you prefer, get hard copies by mail.
Alabama has two basic requirements to file for divorce in the state: a residency requirement, and a legally recognized reason for ending your marriage.
When the spouse who didn’t file the initial divorce papers (known as the “defendant”) is not currently living in the state, the other spouse (the “plaintiff”) must have lived in Alabama for at least six months just before filing for divorce. (Ala. Code § 30-2-5 (2022).) Otherwise, there’s no minimum amount of time you must have lived in the state in order to file for divorce.
Alabama law allows both “no-fault” and “fault-based” legal reasons (“grounds”) for divorce. When you file for a fault-based divorce, you must claim that your spouse is to blame for the end of your marriage by engaging in certain kinds of misconduct, like adultery or violence. Because you’ll have to prove that claim, fault-based divorces almost always cost more and take longer to resolve—without any advantage in the vast majority of cases.
That’s why most Alabama couples choose no-fault divorce. The state allows you to file for divorce based on one of the following no-fault grounds:
you and your spouse are so completely incompatible that you can’t live together, or
your marriage has suffered an “irretrievable breakdown,” and any more attempts to get back together would be futile or impractical and wouldn’t be in the family’s best interests.
(Ala. Code § 30-2-1 (2022).)
Many Alabama residents are finding that they can file for divorce and get through the process without the expense of hiring a lawyer if they’re filing for an “uncontested divorce” in the state. That means that they’ve agreed with each other about all of the legal issues in their divorce, including:
If you still have disagreements with your spouse about these or any other issues involved in ending your marriage, you’ll have to file for a traditional, contested divorce. Because that will involve legal battles and presenting evidence and arguments at court hearings, it would be risky to pursue a contested divorce without a lawyer to navigate the process for you—especially if your spouse has an attorney.
You may use Alabama 3StepDivorce™ as long as:
you meet the state’s residency requirement
you and your spouse agree on the no-fault ground for divorce (incompatibility or breakdown in your marriage), and
you have an uncontested divorce.
You’ll need to have a written marital settlement agreement, signed by both you and your spouse, that covers all of the issues in your divorce. Alabama 3StepDivorce™ will guide you through the process of creating this agreement, based on your answers to the questionnaire.
Alabama 3StepDivorce™ can also help if you aren’t ready to file for divorce, but you want a separation agreement with your spouse. For instance, you might want to work out arrangements for support, custody of your children, who has to move out of the family home, and how to take care of the bills while you’re separated but still legally married.
Just because you haven’t been able to agree with your spouse about everything in your divorce, that doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to go through an expensive and time-consuming contested divorce. You could try divorce mediation. If you’re able to resolve your disagreements with the mediator’s help, you can then use Alabama 3StepDivorce™ to prepare the written settlement agreement, along with the other divorce paperwork.
Generally, you can use Alabama 3StepDivorce™ even when you have minor children with your spouse, as long as you agree on all of the issues related to your kids, including legal and physical custody, a parenting (visitation) schedule, child support, health and dental insurance, and tax deductions. Alabama 3StepDivorce™ will allow you to address these issues in your settlement agreement. We provide a standard parenting schedule, but you’ll have an option of customizing the schedule to meet your individual needs.
However, you won’t be able to address custody-related issues with Alabama 3StepDivorce™ if the affected child or children don’t meet the “home state” requirement. Usually, that means the child must have lived in Alabama with a parent (or a parent figure) during the entire six-month period before you file for divorce (or since birth if the child is younger than six months old). If you don’t meet the six-month rule, you should speak with an attorney to find out whether you might qualify for one of the complicated exceptions to this rule. (Ala. Code §§ 30-3b-102(7), 30-3b-201 (2022).)
In Alabama, both parents have an obligation to support their children. And like all states, Alabama has child support guidelines for calculating how much support the parents should pay, based largely on their incomes and custody arrangements.
3StepDivorce™ provides the Alabama Child Support Guideline Worksheet, so you can easily calculate the state's guideline level of support. You and your spouse may agree to an amount of child support that differs from the guideline amount, but you must explain the reasons for that difference in your agreement. The judge will review your agreement and will approve it only if the amount of child support appears to be fair. (Ala. Rules Jud. Admin., rule 32 (2022).)
In your settlement agreement, you and your spouse may include child support provisions that aren’t legally required, such as a parent’s contributions to private school tuition or the cost of a child’s college education. You may also agree on some specific questions like which parent will claim the children as dependents on tax returns.
After your divorce in Alabama is final, you (or your spouse) may request a change in the amount of child support, but you’ll need to prove that there has been a substantial and continuing change in circumstances that justifies the change. The judge will review your request based on the same legal requirements for an original child support order.
If you want to save the time and expense of a court battle over a request to modify child support, you and your spouse may agree to a modification on your own. If the agreed amount follows the guideline, you might not need a court hearing to get the modification approved.
The Child Support Enforcement Division of the Alabama Department of Human Resources (DHR) periodically reviews child support orders to check if they still meet the child support guidelines. When your circumstances have changed significantly, you may ask for a review of your current order. If a change in support is warranted under the guidelines, DHR will help prepare the necessary legal papers and schedule a court hearing for you.
When you fill out your questionnaire for Alabama 3StepDivorce™, you’ll answer a series of questions about your separate and marital property and debts, including how you’ll divide your marital property and allocate responsibility for payment of the marital debts.
If you own a home with your spouse, your agreement can spell out what will happen to it when you get divorced. Here again, the questionnaire will include a few questions about the property and how you’ve chosen to deal with it, such as:
selling the house and splitting the proceeds
transferring ownership to one spouse, with the other spouse receiving money or other assets in exchange for that spouse’s share, or
continuing to own the property together while allowing one spouse to stay in the house for a period of time (and, if so, how you’ll handle paying the mortgage and other ongoing costs).
In your Alabama 3StepDivorce™, you may also agree on whether and how you’ll divide any retirement accounts that you and your spouse have, including 401(k)s, individual retirement accounts (IRAs), and defined-benefit pensions.
If you started contributing to the retirement plan before you were married, you’ll start by figuring out how much of its current value is marital property and how much is your separate property. There are experts and firms that will do this for you (for a fee, of course). The service is usually known as a pension appraisal or valuation. You’ll almost always need this kind of expert help when you’re dealing with a defined-benefit pension.
Once you know the marital value of your work-related retirement accounts, the easiest way to handle the division of the assets is not to split them but to transfer other assets as an offset. Here’s how that works: Say you have a 401(k) through your job, and the marital portion of the account is worth $100,000. If you and your spouse agree to divide that portion down the middle, and you have other marital assets to divide (such as a regular savings account), your spouse could receive an extra $50,000 from those assets while you keep the entire 401(k). That way, you don’t have to hire another expert to prepare the kind of special order that’s needed to tell the 401(k) administrator how to divide the account.
The rules are different for IRAs. You may simply agree to have your spouse’s share transferred to another IRA account in that spouse’s name. (You’ll have to submit a special form to the bank, along with a copy of your divorce decree.)
You and your spouse may waive any right to alimony in your Alabama divorce, or you may agree on the specifics of alimony payments: who will pay, how much, and for how long. Your agreement may also state whether a court could modify alimony at any time in the future, and it could cover related issues like health insurance and life insurance.
When you get your completed forms with Alabama 3StepDivorce™, your next step will be to file your paperwork with the circuit court clerk’s office in the proper county:
If you and your spouse are both living in Alabama, file in the county where your spouse (the defendant) lives or where the two of you lived just before you separated.
If the defendant lives out of state, file in the county where you live.
(Ala. Code § 30-2-4 (2022).)
In Alabama, the court fees to file divorce papers can vary considerably from county to county. For instance, the fee is $324 in Madison County but about $200 in several other counties. Check with the court clerk’s office in the county where you’ll be filing to find out the current local fee and the payment methods they accept.
If you can’t afford the filing fee, you may apply to have the fees deferred until your divorce case concludes, by filing an Affidavit of Substantial Hardship along with your divorce complaint and other initial paperwork. If you later receive notice that your application has been denied, you’ll then have to pay the fees within 30 days, or your divorce case will be dismissed. (Ala.Code 1975 § 12-19-70 (2022).)
Alabama has a 30-day waiting period, from the time when you file your complaint, until the court may enter your final divorce judgment. (Ala. Code § 30-2-8.1 (2022).) But as a practical matter, most uncontested divorces take longer than that (though typically not more than about 10 weeks).
Alabama 3StepDivorce™ provides unlimited, live, person-to-person support for customers. If you have any questions about how uncontested divorce works, call our Alabama Divorce Online Help Center at (888) 665-6782 (toll free), Monday through Friday from 8 am to 5 pm (Pacific Time).
Please keep in mind that we are not lawyers and so cannot give out legal advice. If you have questions about Alabama law or need legal advice, we recommend that you contact an experienced family law attorney in your area.
3StepDivorce TM is a premium online divorce solution, a sister company of Divorce Source, the owner and operator of the Divorce Source Network, the web's largest and most visited online divorce resource since 1997.
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