How can I get a divorce with little or no money?

Asked about 5 years ago - Pittston, PA

Hi. I have been married for 16 years. My marriage has been over for at least 9. I have stayed for the "sake of the children" despite the way I have been treated by my husband and his mother. We both want a divorce but financial things have not been stable - ever. We own a home together which neither one of us can afford - I've suggested selling the house but he won't hear of it. He wants to keep the house and I am to find a place to live. The kids have known this as their home their entire lives. I have also asked him to leave several times - to stay with his mother temporarily - until we can divorce. I would sign any temporary agreements necessary to move forward. I am the primary caregiver of my kids (2 kids) and have been home with them most of their lives. I just want to move on.

Additional information

Please note that I have no where to go. My mother is siding with him and takes him and the kids on vacation with her - last year I put a stop to it and told their father that the children have to go school shopping, etc and they won't be going this year. He was extremely irate but they did not go. I want to apply for public assistance to help me get on my feet until I can get my life in order. I have a college degree and am currently working part time as a waitress to try to get some money together. My kids and I have been in this turmoil for far too long. Thank you.

Attorney answers (1)

  1. Constance Pifer Brunt

    Contributor Level 9

    Answered . Unfortunately, your situation does not appear to be a simple one. There are numerous issues that must be addressed, including the equitable distribution of your home and any other property, the parenting (custody) arrangements for your children, child support, and possibly alimony. While most county court systems offer forms and instructions for use by persons representing themselves to file the legal papers to obtain a divorce, you will lose many of your economic rights if a divorce decree is entered without a written agreement or court order resolving those other issues.

    It is important that you seek legal advice to understand your options. I suggest that you contact your local county bar association for a referral if you do not know of any attorneys who practice family law. Some bar associations have programs to provide low cost or free legal services to qualifying individuals, although those are generally reserved for very low income individuals with no property or assets.

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