File for Divorce in Caldwell County, Kentucky (KY) | Divorce in Caldwell County

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Online Divorce in Caldwell County

divorce in Caldwell County

Please note: in Caldwell County, Kentucky, is a divorce document preparation service, not a law firm. Online Divorce is not eligible to provide legal advice. All the information below is for informational purposes only.

Those looking to deal with their dissolution of marriage in a quick and inexpensive way in the state of Kentucky can find it convenient and cheap to prepare their divorce paperwork online. Nowadays, more and more states require divorcing couples to submit their divorce documents either typed or completed online and printed out. Kentucky is one such state. It requires a Certificate of Divorce to be typed rather than hand-written.

Filing for a divorce is the first step on the way to a new life. Using, divorcing couples can take that first step in a fast and affordable manner without a lawyer and unnecessary expenses. As a divorce documents preparation service, assists divorcing couples to complete all the necessary legal forms required for their specific state and county where the papers will be filed.

Typically, online divorce is a suitable option for those couples who are ready to proceed with no contest on the major issues pertinent to the divorce, such as child custody, support, and property division. If both parties agree to cooperate and do not want to go to trial, they may have a do-it-yourself divorce. Filing for your own divorce is common for couples who want to cut down on legal expenses. In such a case, divorcing couples can limit the use of legal help and/or mediation to resolve any remaining issues and thus significantly reduce the cost of divorce.

To make sure that your divorce case can be uncontested, answer a questionnaire on and the necessary forms necessary for your particular case. By following the simple instructions provided by, you make this first step stress-free and efficient.

Before starting a DIY divorce, spouses are advised to peruse online resources about divorce and family law in their state. They need to get familiar with local rules and legal procedures and understand the step-by-step algorithm of how to get a divorce in Caldwell County, KY. Having learned the necessary steps and available options, spouses will understand how to finalize their divorce proceedings in an easy and affordable way.

Here is a short guide on key elements of a Kentucky divorce followed up by some Frequently Asked Questions.

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As a “no-fault” state, Kentucky doesn't recognize fault-based grounds for divorce. This means that divorcing couples can simply state “irreconcilable differences” as their motive for getting a divorce.

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Custody of the child in Caldwell County

Custody of the child in Caldwell County

Following the Uniform Child Custody Act (UCCJEA) adopted by Kentucky in 1980, Kentucky courts base their child custody decisions on the best interests of the child. Taking into consideration a number of factors, Kentucky courts prefer to award parents with joint custody which includes both legal and physical custody. According to the Kentucky Revised Statutes Chapter 403 – Marriage Dissolution--Child Custody, sole custody is also available, depending on the circumstances of each parent and the child.

At the same time, joint custody does not translate into equal custody. Rather, parents work out a suitable parenting plan where they decide where the child lives and how they both take care of the child based on the best interests of the child.

Before awarding child custody, the court factors in:

  • Each parent’s willingness to have custody;
  • The child’s wishes to live with one or the other parent;
  • The mental and physical health of all the parties;
  • The child’s adjustment to the environment, home, school, and community;
  • The relationship and interaction of the child with his or her parents and other family members;
  • and the family’s history of domestic violence, if any.

It must be clarified with the clerk’s office of Caldwell County whether you should adhere to visitation standards. The non-custodial parent will get less visitation time than in cases where both parents split joint custody. Make sure you understand what you get if you agree to let go of physical custody.
Before you start handling your child custody issues, make sure your case is not complicated, or else the arrangements may come out different than what you wanted. If you need consultation or legal advice but you cannot hire an attorney, try the Kentucky Legal Aid society.

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Rules for child support in Caldwell County

Under Kentucky law, both parents are expected to support their child(ren) financially until they reach the age of 18 or graduate from high school.

In Caldwell County, KY, child support is governed by the child support guidelines.

Kentucky courts carefully examine each parent’s income, each parent’s health and employment, child care expenses, and the child’s health to decide on child support payments. It is generally accepted that the custodial parent takes on the bulk of child care expenses, whereas the non-custodial parent provides health insurance coverage for the child and covers other possible expenses in addition to monthly child support payments.

The petitioner can request a child support order from the court even if he or she has not yet met the residency requirements and, hence, has not yet filed for divorce. Contact your Caldwell County prosecutor’s office to receive further guidance.

Rules for spousal support in Caldwell County

Rules for spousal support in Caldwell County

Kentucky courts can award spousal support, also referred to as maintenance or alimony, if the financial circumstances of the lesser earning spouse justify it. For example, if the marriage ended after 10 years and one spouse is not financially independent.

According to Kentucky Revised Statutes § 403.200 Maintenance, the court may grant a spousal maintenance order for either spouse, regardless of sex.

Taking into consideration the incomes, earning abilities, marital property, health, and contribution to the marriage of each spouse, the court can award temporary or permanent maintenance. In some cases, the court may order maintenance just through the process of the divorce. In other cases, the judge may award post-dissolution maintenance to allow the lesser earning spouse to get back on their feet and start supporting themselves. The latter type of maintenance is rarely ordered for longer than 5 years. In some cases, however, it can last for half the length of the marriage.

To get an estimate of the amount of maintenance you can expect to get or pay, visit the Kentucky Child Support Website.

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Property division in Caldwell County

Property division in Caldwell County

How is property divided in Kentucky? According to the Kentucky Revised Statutes Section 403.190 (Disposition of (Marital) Property), the court will divide assets fairly and equitably.

Even though Kentucky is an equitable distribution state, under the Uniform Disposition of Community Property Rights at Death Act (UDCPRDA), marital property can be divided using community property laws if one of the spouses used to live in a state with community property. Divorcing couples do not lose their pre-existing property rights when they move to Kentucky and file for divorce there.

When deciding what to give each spouse, the court makes a decision based on each party’s contribution to the marital property, each spouse’s economic circumstances through the process of the divorce, each party’s earning capacity, and whether either party wasted or destroyed marital property.

For example, if one spouse brings their own house into the marriage and has made payments and repairs for the house, the court will not give half of the house to the other spouse, because he or she did not contribute to it during the marriage.

The divorcing couple can decide how they want to split marital property on their own and write it down in a marital settlement agreement. If they choose not to split half and half, they need to explain to the judge what motivates that decision. The judge may allow it if he or she finds it reasonable and fair.

Whereas cars are not marital property, real estate, land, furniture, bank accounts, and retirement accounts are included as marital property. Therefore, dividing retirement accounts can be complicated and requires the help of an attorney.

Mediation support in Caldwell County

Applying Rule 703 Mediation of Baldwin's Kentucky Revised Statutes Annotated, a neutral third party can participate in the divorce process to help disputing spouses resolve their contested issues.

Getting a divorce on your own is a great option for an uncontested divorce, but throughout the process, you may find some issues that you and your spouse may struggle to settle. In such a case, mediation is an option. Mediation can be done with or without the participation of divorce attorneys for each spouse.

In any case, self-representing petitioners are recommended to pursue self-help resources, like the Kentucky Legal Aid website, and learn more about divorce-related matters.

Mediation shall proceed only if both spouses agree. It is not up to the mediator to convince either party that mediation is necessary.

How to file for divorce in Caldwell County | Step-by-Step


Make sure you meet the requirements. Caldwell County, KY requires that one of the spouses meets the state residency requirements. To do so, you must be a resident of Kentucky for at least 180 days and a resident of Caldwell County at the moment of filing.
However, if the petitioner has not lived in Caldwell County for at least 3 months, the respondent can challenge the venue and the court will transfer the divorce case to a county where one or both of the parties reside or dismiss it altogether.
If neither of the parties has lived in the state for at least 6 months, they cannot file in Kentucky. They need to wait until they have been a resident of Kentucky for 180 days and then file for divorce.
If the petitioner meets the residency requirements and files in Kentucky but the respondent has never lived in the state, the Kentucky court will finalize the divorce but will not be able to divide marital assets.
If the respondent lived in Kentucky during the marriage and then moved out of the state and the petitioner meets the residency requirements, the Kentucky court can both finalize the divorce and divide marital assets.
It is very important to note that the finalization of the divorce can only be granted after the divorcing spouses have been separated for at least 60 days.
Also, the wife cannot be pregnant at the moment of filing; otherwise, the spouses must wait until the baby is born before they can file for divorce. Make sure you meet the requirements


Find your local court and obtain court forms to fill out. If you do not know the address of your local family court division, visit the Kentucky Judicial Branch website or the Circuit Court Clerk’s office.
You will need to fill out three forms: the Petition, case Data Sheet, and Certificate of Divorce. Either get printable forms from or obtain them from a court’s clerk. Find your local court and obtain court forms to fill out


Fill out the court forms. Note that the Certificate of Divorce form cannot be hand-written; it must be typed and printed out on 25% Cotton Bond Paper with a visible watermark (the paper is widely available).
If you have trouble filling out the forms, seek help from local court staff or use the services of an online divorce forms preparation company like
Remember to make two copies of each document and have all documents signed in front of a notary. Fill out the court forms


File your divorce papers and pay the filing fee. To file the divorce paperwork, you must visit the courthouse and get a number for the case. The court clerk stamps and files the papers and gives you back the two copies. You will also have to pay a filing fee, which is $153 in Caldwell County, KY.
If you cannot afford the filing fees, you can request a fee waiver. If the judge grants your request, you will get an exemption from paying the filing fees until the divorce is finalized. File your divorce papers and pay the filing fee


Serve your spouse. Serving your spouse is a crucial stage of a divorce, and the court cannot move forward with the divorce process unless the other spouse is served.
Having kept one copy of the divorce papers for yourself, you must serve your spouse the other copy as soon as possible. Under Kentucky law, you have 45 days to serve the spouse after the initial filing. Otherwise, your divorce case will automatically be dismissed.
There are several options on how to serve your spouse. You can deliver the papers by certified mail, through a sheriff or personal process server, or even through a relative or friend. Choose the cheapest, most reliable, or fastest way, but just do not do it by yourself or through your children.
The address of delivery is either your spouse’s home (if he or she goes pro se) or at his or her attorney’s office.
However, if you both agreed on an amicable divorce, there is no need to serve. Arrange a service waiver and have it notarized. Serve your spouse


Wait for the response. Your spouse has the right to file a response and/or a counter-claim to your divorce petition. He or she will pay the filing fee when filing the response with the court or will get a fee waiver.
If they fail to file a response, the petitioner (you) have the right to apply for a default judgment. Wait for the response


File financial disclosure. Under Kentucky law, each party is required to disclose their financial information to the court. The court requires the couple’s financial information in order to make informed decisions on child support, alimony, and temporary orders. File financial disclosure


Attend a final hearing or wait for a divorce decree. After all the above-mentioned steps are taken, the couple either signs a settlement agreement or requests the court to schedule a final hearing.
The easiest way to get an uncontested divorce is to sign a marital settlement agreement where the spouses settle all divorce-related matters either before they file for divorce or during the waiting time after filing. The judge will review the couple’s settlement agreement and upon approving it will issue the final decree of divorce.
At the final hearing, one or both spouses will be requested to answer the judge’s questions. If the paperwork is in order, he or she will sign the final decree. After that, the couple is officially divorced and will get the divorce decree by mail. Attend a final hearing or wait for a divorce decree

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Contested Divorce

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Contested divorces can be lengthy and costly due to spouses being unable to agree on one or more key issues, including child custody, property division, or spousal support.

  • Offline and inconvenient process in which both parties often hire attorneys to represent their interests.
  • The adversarial nature of a contested divorce can lead to heightened emotional stress and strain for both spouses and their families.
  • Absent a settlement, the final divorce judgment and terms are determined by the court, which may not fully align with the preferences of either spouse.

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Fast, affordable, and simple process using our fully-guided divorce questionnaire and filing service.

  • Online process to be completed at your own pace, can get documents as quickly as same day.
  • Receive ready-to-file forms specific to your jurisdiction and situation.
  • Easy online access for both spouses, free revisions for 30 days, and the ability to save your data longer term. Experienced customer support via chat and phone.
  • Ancillary services to ensure optimal outcomes, including name changes, co-parenting support, and getting started with your life after divorce.
  • Detailed instructions on how to file with the court or the option to purchase our filing service.

Filing fees for divorce in Caldwell County

In Caldwell County, KY, the filing fee ranges from $113 to $153 depending on whether the parties go pro se or are represented by attorneys.

Qualifying for in forma pauperis, you can request to have the filing fees waived.

How long will it take?

In Caldwell County, KY, the divorce process cannot be shorter than the 60 days required for the spouses to live separately. Also, keep the 45-day timeframe to serve the other spouse in mind.

Thus, the average timeline for an uncontested divorce in Kentucky is around 90 days.

The length of the divorce process depends on the couple’s individual circumstances. For example, if the spouse refuses to sign a settlement agreement or some points of contention cannot be resolved throughout the waiting period, it will take longer for a divorce to finalize.

On average, couples with children require more time to settle. Couples without children of the marriage can get their divorce decrees sooner.

Filing for divorce in Caldwell County | Frequently Asked Questions

How much does a divorce cost in Caldwell County, KY
A divorce can involve several types of expenditures, depending on the circumstances of the case. One expense that is common in all cases is the filing fees. But this expense can be waived if the family has a low income.
Another common expense is the fee to have documents notarized.
Beyond this, expenses will vary depending on the services used. Attorney fees are typically the highest expense. Lawyers are often paid by the hour, so the more complex and longer the case, the higher the cost. For uncontested cases, some law firms offer a flat fee price.
Additional costs could include mediation fees, fees for parenting classes, appraiser fees for marital property, and financial services related to retirement funds and other family finances.


How to file for divorce in Caldwell County, KY without a lawyer?
It isn’t too difficult to file for divorce in Kentucky without a lawyer. In addition to self-help resources on local circuit court websites, divorcing spouses can get qualified help with completing their paperwork from


What forms are required for an uncontested divorce in Caldwell County, KY?
The bare minimum for any divorce is:

  • Petition for Dissolution
  • Case Data Sheet
  • Certificate of Divorce

The necessary forms beyond that will depend on the individual circumstances of your case.


Can I file for legal separation in Caldwell County, KY?
Yes, Kentucky recognizes legal separation as a viable alternative to divorce. However, both spouses must agree to legally separate. If one spouse disagrees to be legally separated, the court will not approve it. A legal separation can be converted to a divorce not earlier than after 12 months.


When is it allowed to remarry after a divorce?
Kentucky has no waiting period to remarry after a divorce is final.

Divorce in Caldwell County online

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  • We provide the full divorce packet required by the local court - clients do not need to drive to their local courthouse to get the blank forms or search for the right divorce forms online. In rare cases, local county forms can vary in color, paper material, size, or bar code, so they may need to be obtained directly from the county clerk's office.
  • We complete the necessary forms for clients based on their answers given in a simple guided online interview - clients do not need to understand family law or read through complicated instructions to figure out how to fill out the forms themselves.
  • We give detailed, easy to follow step-by-step instructions for filing a divorce with the court - so the client knows exactly what to do to get his/her divorce finalized.
  • We provide unlimited technical support - if a client needs assistance through the online process, he/she can always reach out to us via phone, email, or live chat, and we'll do our best to help.
  • We save our clients time and money - if divorcing spouses agree regarding the terms of their divorce, they typically don’t have to pay thousands to a lawyer to handle their divorce forms and don't need to spend hours trying to do it all by themselves.

Divorce Courts in Caldwell County, Kentucky

Caldwell County Circuit Court
Judge Name:
C. A. Woodall III
Clerk Name:
Danny Hooks
Court Address:
105 W. Court Square, Princeton, Kentucky 42445
Clerk Hours:
8:00 a.m. - 4 p.m.