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Online Divorce in Montana

Preparation of divorce forms is an integral part of any marriage termination process in Montana. To get assistance in completing divorce papers, residents of this state can use services provided by DivorceOnline.

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Uncontested Divorce in Montana

Like other states, Montana accepts both contested and uncontested divorce. The length and complexity of the whole divorce process mainly depend on the selected type of divorce.

  • If spouses fail to reach a complete agreement on divorce-related issues, such as child support, custody, division of marital property, and so on, they will have to go through a contested divorce. In this case, divorcing spouses need to go to trial and have a judge make a decision about any contested issues.
  • If the couple is willing to sign a marital settlement agreement on the key terms of their divorce, they can end their marriage through an uncontested divorce. Although both partners terminating their marriage peacefully will have to meet certain requirements, an uncontested divorce is still much easier and more affordable than a traditional one.

Get Your Divorce Forms Completed Online

DivorceOnline is a perfect alternative to attorneys in an uncontested divorce, as our online platform provides assistance in preparing divorce documents for as little as $139. Even people without a legal background can easily complete the paperwork necessary for their case from the comfort of their homes.

All you have to do is fill out a marriage-related questionnaire and follow simple instructions offered by DivorceOnline. In just two business days, you can download a ready-to-sign set of Montana divorce forms and initiate a divorce process right away.

Currently, Montana courts may require its residents to file the following divorce papers:

  • Affidavit for Publication of Summons
  • Declaration of Disclosure
  • Decree
  • Default
  • Notice and Acknowledgment to CSED
  • Notice and Acknowledgment
  • Notice of Entry of Decree
  • Notice of Filing Child Support Guidelines Affidavit
  • Order of Publication of Summons
  • Petition (there are four types of the divorce petition that may be requested: a Petition for Dissolution (no children), a Petition for Dissolution (with children), a Joint Petition for Dissolution (no children), or a Joint Petition for Dissolution (with children))
  • Parenting Plan
  • Praecipe for Service
  • Request for Hearing and Order Granting Hearing
  • Summons and TRO
  • Consent to Entry of Decree
  • Vital Statistic Reporting Form

Steps for Filing a Divorce in Montana

In order to dissolve the marriage legally, each divorcing couple should follow several significant steps outlined below.

To initiate the divorce process, at least one partner must have been a legal resident of the state for a minimum of 90 days preceding the filing of the action.

Usually, Montana divorce forms are filed in the county where the filing spouse resides.

Although some states still allow spouses to pursue a fault divorce, Montana only accepts no-fault grounds for marriage dissolution. In other words, the decision to file for a divorce can be justified by irreconcilable differences or separation for a specific amount of time, not marital misconduct, in the state.

When the judge reviews the divorce case, they need to ensure at least one of the following requirements is fulfilled:

  1. the marriage is irretrievably broken, which is supported by appropriate evidence:
  2. the spouses have lived separate and apart for at least 180 days before the divorce case is started
  3. the couple has faced a serious marital discord that has a considerable impact on the attitude of one or both of the partners towards the marriage.

The main benefit of a no-fault divorce is that it is way quicker, easier, and less expensive than an at-fault one. Considering that people applying for this type of divorce expend less negative energy, they typically manage to avoid divorce-related stress.

To initiate the marriage termination process in the state, the filing spouse should bring a full set of divorce documents to the local court and file them along with appropriate legal fees.

Divorce papers in Montana

Required divorce forms differ from case to case, depending on personal circumstances and the county where the paperwork is filed. However, the majority of soon-to-be-ex-spouses need to submit the following documents to start the divorce in Montana:

  • Petition for Dissolution (with or without children)
  • Summons

To determine the exact documents needed for a certain divorce case, the couple can contact the Clerk of District Court's Office. People using online divorce services are not required to select up-to-date Montana divorce forms. The system will carry out this task itself.

Filing fees

For the court to accept and review submitted divorce forms, filing spouses should release a one-time payment. In Montana, filing fees may vary from county to county, although the average cost required to initiate marriage termination is nearly $250.00 ($200.00 filing fee and $50.00 judgment fee). The refusal to pay these costs can lead to case dismissal.

Waiting period

Presently, there is no waiting period in Montana unless one of the spouses denies that their marriage is irretrievably broken. In this case, the judge can delay the final hearing for up to 60 days and suggest spouses attend counseling to verify there is no chance for reconciliation.

Once Montana divorce papers are filed, the petitioner should notify the other spouse that legal action is taken against them. This task can be served in one of the following ways:

  • By hiring the sheriff
  • By mailing a copy of the paperwork to the defendant
  • By service by publication (if the other party is missing)

If the judge finds a settlement agreement reasonable and fair, they will sign the divorce order. Then, the petitioner should ensure that the defendant receives the final order copy and understands the terms of the divorce.

Getting a Divorce With Children

Based on Montana family law, the terms "custody" and "visitation" both fall under the general term "parenting." It can be explained by a variety of misunderstandings that have always been associated with these words. The thing is, the term "custody" was often described as the right of one parent to get full control over children's lives like it was a contest to be won or lost.

When it comes to minor children, Montana judges typically consider custody from two perspectives: physical and legal. Physical custody refers to the parent's right and obligation to take care of the child on a daily basis while living with them. Legal custody can be defined as the right to make major decisions about the child, including their education, medical care, nutrition, and social life.

The judge always acts in the child's best interests when determining child custody. To ensure the final decision is fair and satisfies the expectations of all people involved, the court may consider factors, such as:

  • the child's age and personal preferences;
  • the child's relationships with other family members;
  • the child's adjustment to home, school, and community;
  • each parent's mental and physical health;
  • each parent's financial stability.

Still, joint custody is preferred over sole custody in Montana, which means that both parents have equal responsibility to care for the child. Sole custody may be awarded if one of the parents has a history of abuse or physical violence over other people.

According to Montana Child Support Guidelines, both parents have financial responsibility for a child. The exact amount of child support necessary in a certain case depends on several factors, including each parent's income, the number of children involved, the type of awarded custody, and the kid's extraordinary needs, if any. Most often, a non-custodial parent (the one who spends less time with the child) is the only person ordered to pay financial support.

Filing for Divorce in Montana Without a Lawyer

If spouses agree on divorce-related terms, they can apply for a divorce without the aid of an attorney. Considering that an uncontested divorce does not require the resolution of considerable issues, people going through a marriage termination without legal advice can save a lot of time and money on attorney's fees.

At the same time, if the couple has any ongoing disputes regarding marriage dissolution, they can use services provided by a mediator to address their problems in an encouraging, non-threatening atmosphere. Since communication in mediation is protected and confidential, partners can honestly discuss challenging interpersonal conflicts in safe, practical ways.

Do-It-Yourself Divorce in Montana

  • A DIY divorce is a completely legit process of representing yourself in court without an attorney. It can be considered a perfect fit for uncontested divorce cases, as DIY divorce helps to save lots of money and time.
  • For instance, people using attorney's services usually need to spend several thousand dollars and wait around 1-2 weeks to receive completed divorce forms. In contrast, when using an online divorce service, such as DivorceOnline, in a DIY divorce, divorcing spouses spend around $139 and two business days to get completed Montana divorce documents.
  • Montana residents can also select and fill out divorce forms on their own, although it might require a solid legal background and understanding of local laws and requirements.


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Frequently Asked Questions:

Once the divorce paperwork has been filed in district court, it usually takes around 30-90 days to finalize an uncontested divorce. However, contested cases can last over a year, which can be explained by a variety of divorce-related matters that should be addressed in open court.

In addition to filing fees (around $250), divorcing couples may spend money on either attorney's services or online services to prepare the paperwork. Local attorneys charge around 170-200$ per hour, whereas the price of online divorce services starts from 139$ for the entire set of documents. Thus, the cost of getting a peaceful divorce differs from case to case in Montana.

To get a free divorce, Montana residents should use a DIY option and apply for a fee waiver by filling out the Financial Affidavit and Request for Waiver of Fees form. The judge will review this document and waive the fees if the divorcing person proves that releasing this payment is an extreme financial hardship for them.

The main forms needed for each divorce case in Montana are Petition for Dissolution and Summons. Besides, spouses may be required to submit some of the documents listed below:

  • Declaration of Disclosure
  • Decree
  • Notice and Acknowledgment to CSED
  • Notice of Entry of Decree
  • Notice of Filing Child Support Guidelines Affidavit
  • Parenting Plan
  • Vital Statistic Reporting Form