Common Documents in Divorce

A divorce is legal action between spouse to terminate a marriage. Even when a married couple mutually agree on divorcing and reach agreements on issues such as property distribution, spousal support, child support, child custody, and parenting time, they must go through the court system legally end the marriage. In an Oregon divorce case, there are several documents the law requires to complete throughout the divorce process.

Under Oregon law, divorce case begins when one spouse files the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage form with the appropriate court in the county where either spouses resides. The filing spouse must give notice of the divorce to the other spouse by serving that spouse with a copy of the petition along with a summons. The summons must contain: the title of the cases, the name of the court, the names of the parties to the divorce, direction that the defendant-spouse is required to appear and defend himself in the divorce and the consequence of failing to do so, the filing spouse’s address and the address where the response to petition may be mailed, and the amount of time the defendant-spouse has to respond to the petition.

When the plaintiff-spouse serves the petition and summons to the defendant-spouses, the plaintiff-spouse must file a Certificate of Service that states when, where, how, and to whom the petition and summons was given. The defendant-spouse must respond the petition by: responding to each allegation in the petition; not responding and defaulting on the case; or agreeing to judgment.

If the defendant-spouse files a response, the parties need to submit the Statement of Assets and Liabilities document. On the form the assets and liabilities are listed for each party. A description of the assets and liabilities are also provided along with their claimed values. The Notice of Statutory Restraining Order Preventing Dissipation of Assets document informs the plaintiff-spouse and defendant-spouse that they are prohibited from get rid of, lapsing, change, destroy, or alter in any property such as, insurance benefits, real property, or personal property. Each party must also submit a Confidential Information Form (CIF), which may include the each party’s name, their child or children’s names, driver’s license numbers, employer’s contact information, date of birth, and Social Security number.

A divorce concludes when all of the issues are resolved by agreement or court order. The court then issues a General Judgment of Dissolution of Marriage. The document states the court findings and outlines child custody arrangements, child support orders, spousal orders, and property distribution.

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