Skip to main content

Divorce steps and duration in California

Los Angeles, CA |

To Whom It May Concern:
Can someone provide us the steps to file divorce in California? What is the time line?
Both souses are in agreement. There are no assets to divide (prenuptial agreement), no children.
The marriage is coming close to 5 years (in case marriage duration would matter).
Thank you for all help.

Attorney Answers 2


It takes a minimum of six months. Yes, marriage duration matters (and the cutoff is 5 years) if you're eligible to file for a summary dissolution. Get the step-by-step "how to" guide linked below, which includes copies of all the forms you'll need.

Disclaimer: Please note that this answer does not constitute legal advice, and should not be relied on, since each state has different laws, each situation is fact specific, and it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship.

Mark as helpful


If you and your spouse or domestic partner can agree about how to handle money, property, and parenting, you have an "uncontested case." You also have an uncontested case, if your spouse or domestic partner will probably not file any forms in court disagreeing with your requests. If your spouse or domestic partner fails to file a Response in the case (defaults), your case can be completed as an uncontested case even if you and your spouse or domestic partner do not agree on everything.

Most uncontested cases can be handled by mail and brief contacts with a judge. You may not have to see the judge at all.

The process begins by filing a petition for dissolution with the court and serving it on the respondent. The timing begins upon service of the petition on the respondent and you will not be able to enter a judgment until 6 months have passed.

Here’s a link that should be helpful:

Best of luck to you.

If you found this answer helpful, let me know by clicking the "thumbs-up" button at the bottom of this answer. It’s easy and appreciated.

This response is intended to be a general statement of law, should not be relied upon as legal advice, does not create an attorney/client relationship and does not create a right to continuing email exchanges.

Mark as helpful