How to Get a Free Divorce in Louisiana

By Renee Booker
Poor couples in Louisiana can obtain a divorce at no cost.

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Divorce is the legal procedure by which a marriage is terminated. During a divorce, decisions regarding custody of minor children, support, division of assets and many other important issues will be made. In some cases, the parties to the divorce are able to agree on all issues without legal counsel. Additionally, if the filing party qualifies, she may be able to file the divorce without paying a filing fee, making the entire divorce free.

Locate and complete the forms required to file the divorce. You will need the Petition for Divorce and Summons as well as the Final Judgment of Divorce. You may also need additional documents depending on your circumstances. Forms may be found on local court websites.

Contact the court office to ascertain what form they require in order to file in forma pauperis. Filing in forma pauperis means filing as a poor person. Louisiana law requires that each court have a procedure for an applicant to petition to file without paying the costs of filing. Complete the proper form as directed by the court.

File the petition for divorce, summons and request to file without paying a filing fee with the clerk of the court. Make at least one copy of each form before you file them. You may be required to provide supporting financial information or appear for a hearing to determine whether you may file the divorce without paying the filing fee.

Negotiate an amicable settlement with your spouse. In order to avoid the costs of litigation you and your spouse must reach an agreement regarding all of the issues in your divorce. Once you have reached an agreement, reduce the agreement to writing in the form of a settlement agreement. File the settlement agreement with the court.

Complete the proposed final judgment of divorce. Bring the proposed final judgment of divorce to the final hearing set by the court. The judge will sign the judgment or make changes if needed and then sign the judgment.

About the Author

Renee Booker has been writing professionally since 2009 and was a practicing attorney for almost 10 years. She has had work published on Gadling, AOL's travel site. Booker holds a Bachelor of Arts in political science from Ohio State University and a Juris Doctorate from Indiana University School of Law.

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