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Iowa Divorce Laws
Iowa Residency Requirements
There is a 1 year residency requirement for all spouses filing in the state, unless the plaintiff in the case is not a resident, then he or she does not have a residency requirement in order to file for a dissolution of marriage. The parties shall file for a dissolution of marriage in the county where either party resides. No decree dissolving a marriage shall be granted in any proceeding before ninety days shall have elapsed from the day the original notice is served. (Iowa Code - Sections 598.2, 598.6 and 598.19)
Iowa Divorce Grounds:
Allege that there has been a breakdown of the marriage relationship to the extent that the legitimate objects of matrimony have been destroyed and there remains no reasonable likelihood that the marriage can be preserved. (Iowa Code - Sections 598.5 and 598.17)
Iowa Property and Debt Division
The court shall divide all property, except inherited property or gifts received by one party, equitably between the parties after considering all of the following: 1. The length of the marriage. 2. The property brought to the marriage by each party. 3. The contribution of each party to the marriage, giving appropriate economic value to each party's contribution in homemaking and child care services. 4. The age and physical and emotional health of the parties. 5. The contribution by one party to the education, training or increased earning power of the other. 6. The earning capacity of each party 7. The desirability of awarding the family home or the right to live in the family home for a reasonable period to the party having custody of the children, or if the parties have joint legal custody, to the party having physical care of the children. 8. The amount and duration of an order granting support payments to either party and whether the property division should be in lieu of such payments. 9. Other economic circumstances of each party, including pension benefits, vested or unvested, and future interests. 10. The tax consequences to each party. 11. Any written agreement made by the parties concerning property distribution. 12. The provisions of an antenuptial agreement. 13. Other factors the court may determine to be relevant in an individual case. (Iowa Code - Sections 598.21)
Iowa Spousal Support, Maintenance, or Alimony:
The court may grant an order requiring support payments to either party for a limited or indefinite length of time after considering all of the following: 1. The length of the marriage. 2. The age and physical and emotional health of the parties. 3. The distribution of property 4. The educational level of each party at the time of marriage and at the time the action is commenced. 5. The earning capacity of the party seeking maintenance 6. The feasibility of the party seeking maintenance becoming self-supporting at a standard of living reasonably comparable to that enjoyed during the marriage, and the length of time necessary to achieve this goal. 7. The tax consequences to each party. 8. Any mutual agreement made by the parties concerning financial or service contributions by one party with the expectation of future reciprocation or compensation by the other party. 9. The provisions of an antenuptial agreement. 10. Other factors the court may determine to be relevant in an individual case. (Iowa Code - Sections 598.21, 598.22 and 598.32)
Iowa Custody and Visitation:
In considering what custody arrangement is in the best interest of the minor child, the court shall consider the following factors: 1. Whether each parent would be a suitable custodian for the child. 2. Whether the psychological and emotional needs and development of the child will suffer due to lack of active contact with and attention from both parents. 3. Whether the parents can communicate with each other regarding the child's needs. 4. Whether both parents have actively cared for the child before and since the separation. 5. Whether each parent can support the other parent's relationship with the child. 6. Whether the custody arrangement is in accord with the child's wishes or whether the child has strong opposition, taking into consideration the child's age and maturity. 7. Whether one or both the parents agree or are opposed to joint custody. 8. The geographic proximity of the parents. 9. Whether the safety of the child, other children, or the other parent will be jeopardized by the awarding of joint custody or by unsupervised or unrestricted visitation. 10. Whether a history of domestic abuse exists. (Iowa Code - Section 598.41)
Iowa Child Support:
The parties cannot agree on a monthly support amount, the court will apply the support guidelines. This amount determined by the use of the guidelines may be adjusted for fairness or the special needs of a child. The court may subsequently modify existing orders when there is a substantial change in circumstances. In determining whether there is a substantial change in circumstances, the court shall consider the following: a. Changes in the employment, earning capacity, income or resources of a party. b. Receipt by a party of an inheritance, pension or other gift. c. Changes in the medical expenses of a party. d. Changes in the number or needs of dependents of a party. e. Changes in the physical, mental, or emotional health of a party. f. Changes in the residence of a party. g. Remarriage of a party. h. Possible support of a party by another person. i. Changes in the physical, emotional or educational needs of a child whose support is governed by the order. j. Contempt by a party of existing orders of court. k. Other factors the court determines to be relevant in an individual case. (Iowa Code - Section 598.21)
Iowa Common Questions
How Do I Know if I Should File in Iowa?
One would typically file for divorce in the state in which he or she or his or her spouse resides. If you have recently moved to a new state and wish to file in that new state, you may have to establish residency prior to filing.
If you are in the military and are stationed on a base outside your residency state, you typically are able to file in that state or in your residency state.
If you are in the military and are stationed overseas, you would typically file in your home residency state.
Can I Use 3StepDivorceTM if I Have Children?
Yes. The system and your documents will address all the issues regarding your children such as, but not limited to; custody arrangements, visitation and time-sharing, child support, and medical coverage.
How Much Are the Iowa Filing and/or Court Fees?
The filing and/or court fees are not included in our fee and typically range from $50.00 to $350.00 in total depending on your location of filing and whether or not you have children. The 3StepDivorce service will typically help you yield the lowest filing fee for you because both you and your spouse are in agreement.
How Long Will the Process Take in Iowa?
The process takes an average of less than 1 hour to answer the required questions and generate the documents. Once you file your documents with the court according the filing procedures, the length of time will vary depending on the number of cases in front of yours. Each court has only one or just a few Judges, Masters, or Referees to review all the pending cases.
Should I File or Should My Spouse File?
As a rule of thumb, for uncontested divorces, the spouse who really wants the divorce to be finalized typically does the filing.
Where and How Do I File My Documents?
The documents are filed at your local county courthouse in the family law or domestic relations division or department. Inside your account you will receive step-by-step filing procedures.
Can I Mail or Fax My Documents to the Clerk?
Many courts do permit you to mail and/or fax the documents. This will vary from county to county and state to state, so it will be best to check with the clerk at the courthouse when you are ready to file.
Do I Have to Go to Court in Iowa?
Depending on your state and your situation, you may or may not have to attend a short hearing. Most of the time when a hearing is required, it only lasts 10-15 minutes and only the filing spouse must attend. The hearing is where you will be granted your divorce and the judge will sign the final judgment or decree.
Do I Have to Also Hire a Lawyer?
3StepDivorce is designed for you to do your own uncontested divorce without hiring a lawyer. You will be acting as your own lawyer and filing for your own divorce. Should you need or desire legal advice or should your divorce become contested, we do suggest you hire the services of a lawyer.
Will My Name Also Be Changed?
The wife has the option to change her name back to her former or maiden name through the 3StepDivorce solution.
When is the Divorce Actually Finalized in Iowa?
The divorce is typically finalized when the Judge signs the final judgment or decree. We give a window of 30-90 days from the filing date, but this will vary due to case load at the courthouse and any mandatory waiting periods.
Iowa Divorce Forms
Iowa Forms: Our question and answer technology will allow you to easily complete your Iowa divorce forms for an uncontested divorce. Our goal is to give you full control and make "doing your own divorce", fast, easy, and affordable.Iowa Divorce Forms List
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All Your Completed Iowa Divorce Forms
Everything in Writing As Suggested by Lawyers & Judges
Easy to Follow Step-by-Step Filing Procedures
Instant Delivery & Editing Without the Wait
Unlimited Free E-mail and Phone Product Support
Works With or Without Children
100% Court Approval Guarantee or Your Money Back
Real-Time Customer Ratings and Reviews
A total of 335 people have started their divorce through 3StepDivorceTM in the last 24 hours and 3387 in the last 10 days. The streamlined and user-friendly process, instant document delivery, and unlimited free support makes us the go-to solution to do your own divorce. Our simple and inexpensive process provides you with all your completed divorce papers in as little as 20 minutes. Instantly access your completed divorce forms after a short online interview. It is that easy, no lengthy completion or delivery times.
This easy to use online divorce is a "do it yourself (without a lawyer)" solution for any uncontested divorce (with or without children) that will be filed in the state of Iowa. An uncontested divorce is one in which you and your spouse are in agreement and eliminates the stress and expense of settling your divorce in court.
With 3StepDivorceTM you can complete and print your Iowa divorce forms (including a marital settlement agreement) instantly. Follow our step-by-step filing procedures to file for divorce in Iowa in a timely, professional, and hassle free fashion. The online software is designed to give you full control of your divorce and also avoids the use of third party data entry, thus helping protect your personal information and privacy. If you're not ready to file for divorce, learn more about getting your Separation Agreement or learn more about the basics of divorce in Iowa.
3StepDivorceTM is a premium online divorce solution provided by 3 Step Solutions, LLC, a sister company of Divorce Source, Inc., the owner and operator of the Divorce Source Network, the web's largest and most visited online divorce resource since 1997.
|A sister company of Divorce Source with over 750,000 forms processed since 1997.||Have your completed documents within 1 hour (with or without children)||Instantly print your documents (free delivery by US Priority Mail is also available).||Instantly make changes (gives you full control, the way it should be!)||All required divorce documents ready for signing.|
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