Steps to File an Uncontested Divorce in Tennessee (BASICS 101)
Complaint for DivorceThis document identifies the parties, state the grounds for divorce and asks the court to grant the divorce. After filing there is a mandatory 60 day waiting period if no children are involved and 90 days if there are children. If you cannot afford the filing fee you need to file an affidavit of indigency. A confidential statistical data sheet is also required to be attached which outlines the following: the full names of the parties, social security numbers, date of separation, information about any children, where the parties are employed, and the number of previous marriages. In addition one needs to file a Divorce Certificate form. The complaint is filed with a summons , a copy is served upon the other spouse and they have 30 days to answer to the complaint. The Defendant spouse can either admit or deny the allegations and information contained within. If they do not answer within 30 days you may file a motion for default judgment and an accompanying order for default judgment
Marital Dissolution AgreementThis document follows the format of the complaint and the final decree and outlines 1) property awarded to husband and wife 2) debts to be paid by husband and wife 3) Alimony (if any) 4) Pension or retirement accounts 5) any other claims such as prenuptial, post nuptial, separation agreement, automobile accidents, etc. Note: The Marital Dissolution Agreement cannot be more than 180 days old when the judge signs the Final Decree
Final DecreeThis document outlines many of the same topics covered in the Marital Dissolution Agreement except for 1) Dissolution of Marriage 2) Child Support and 3) Name Changes 4) Orders of Protection and 5) Fees and costs. Please note if there is one or more dependent children involved in the divorce it will also be necessary to agree on the terms on a Permanent Parenting Plan (PPP), a possible Wage Assignment (if this is necessary to receive spousal or child support), Qualified Domestic Relations Order (if one spouse is seeking pension benefits from the other), Title IV-D info (if one parent of a child is receiving assistance from the State of Tennessee).