I am sure a lot of divorce lawyers would be unhappy with me if they read this but the answer is YES! Now, that doesn’t mean you don’t need a lawyer to represent you in your divorce. But filing the paperwork is easy and will save you some money off the top. See our next post for information about whether you need to hire a divorce attorney.
Many counties in Wisconsin have self-help centers or volunteer lawyers or paralegals who come In for limited hours to assist people. Notably, Waukesha and Milwaukee County have wonderful self-help centers with all of the forms and instructions that you need.
The Wisconsin Court Access system also has an Online Family Law Forms Assistant which will direct you to the correct forms after you answer certain questions (do you have children, etc.). This will walk you through the process and give you different options such as printing out blank forms or having the forms completed for you after answering certain questions. There are also tutorials for certain counties which explain exactly what you need to do.
These forms are fill in the blank and check the box. There is nothing complicated about them. As long you file the correct forms, which basically differentiate between children or no children, and answer the questions correctly, there are not too many mistakes you can make on these forms. Even if you do, an attorney can always amend them later for you.
There is some time involved. You need to make several copies and take them to the courthouse which can be intimidating or inconvenient, especially in Milwaukee. Unless you are filing jointly with your spouse, you also need to arrange for services of the papers on your spouse. Given that, most people simply would rather have an attorney take care of this for them. That is perfectly fine and we are happy to do that.
However, if you can navigate through the forms and have some time to take care of this yourself, you certainly can save yourself some attorney fees by doing so. After filing, simply call or visit us and we can pick up your case from there.
The Wisconsin Coalition Against Domestic Violence created a very helpful flowchart which tells you all of the steps you must take to file for divorce. Click here for this helpful tool.
Whether you choose to file the papers yourself or have us prepare them for you, please contact us for your free initial office consultation at 414-258-1644 or visit our website for more information.