The “Do it Yourself” Divorce in Oregon

Couple getting divorce papers Oregon from a Judge

Do you want to file for your Oregon divorce online, or by completing printed forms? You have several options. If you are working with a lawyer, they will usually advise that they file the Oregon divorce forms for you. Lawyers usually charge between $800 and $1,000 for this service. If you are working with a Divorce Mediator such as Oregon Divorce Guides, after writing your agreement they may refer you to with an attorney or paralegal that can file your divorce forms for $500 to $1,000. However, even if you have consulted with an attorney or mediator, you can still file the divorce papers yourself.

The “Do it Yourself” Divorce in Oregon

There are a collection of forms required by the State of Oregon to formalize a legal divorce. The initial centerpiece form is the “Petition for Dissolution”, which essentially requests the court to begin presiding over your dissolution of marriage (divorce). The petition form is different, depending on whether you have children. Your spouse (the respondent) would then file a response to the petition, which either accepts or declines the terms of the petition.

If you are in agreement about the terms of your divorce, then it is not important who is the petitioner and who is the respondent. Most of my clients file as “co-petitioners” at the end of the mediation process. If you are not in agreement about any of the issues, then you should consider a different approach for how to get a divorce in Oregon.

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There are several Oregon divorce papers that are essential to submit to the court. When you complete and file the forms with the court yourselves, without professional representation, this is referred to as “pro se” in legal jargon.

There are three main ways to file the Oregon divorce forms yourself: a printed packet, online divorce forms, and a completely digital (online) divorce filing.

Printed Packet of Oregon Divorce Documents

Your county courthouse will have a printed packet which includes all of the required forms to file for a divorce in Oregon. So long as you stop by during normal work hours, you should have no problem obtaining this packet from the court clerk. The packet may also include instructions for how to complete the forms.

Online Forms of Oregon Divorce Documents

This is similar to the printed packet, except that you download and print the packet yourselves. That packet, along with detailed instructions for how to complete the forms can be found on the Oregon Judicial Department’s website.

Completely Online Filing of Oregon Divorce Documents

Your can now file your divorce papers in Oregon digitally (completely online). Here are Written Instructions for On-Line Self-Filing and Video Instructions.

Having Trouble with your Forms?

Most county courthouses have a court clerk who is available to help. The clerk can look over your completed forms and answer basic questions about how to fill them out. The court clerk cannot provide legal advice or tell you what to write in your forms. In some counties, the clerk is available at at a walk-in counter. In other counties, you may need to schedule an appointment.

Alternatives to the “Do it yourself divorce in Oregon”

There are multiple on-line services that will file your forms for you for a fee. You can easily find these services by an internet search.

Another alternative is to hire a paralegal. A paralegal will gather your divorce information and file your forms for you, which usually costs $200-$300. At a slightly lower cost, some paralegals will also guide you through the process of self-filing. Make sure the paralegal you are working with has extensive experience filing for divorce online in Oregon.

Don’t Have the Money to Get a Divorce?

There are court fees to when you file for Divorce or Legal Separation in Oregon. If you don’t have teh money to get a divorce in Oregon, you can request a waiver or deferral of the court fees. Here is a link to the fee waiver request form for the Oregon courts.

Read: Should I Get a Divorce? Dealing with Indecision

Read: Mediation Benefits