Welcome to the

Hampshire County Probate and Family Court

Information Center

Welcome to the

Hampshire County Probate and Family Court

Information Center

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

The following information is provided to you as a public service and does not constitute legal advice.  When you sign a legal document or file any documents with the court it can seriously affect your future.  You should always try to get legal advice before signing any documents, filing any documents with the Court or appearing in Court.

 

 

 

Business hours 8:00 to 3:00 Monday through Friday        Telephone (413) 586-8500
 
Business hours 8:00 to 3:00 Monday through Friday        Telephone (413) 586-8500

 

 

Divorce Information

Divorce is the dissolution of the marriage relationship by the judgment of the Court.  Actions for divorce should be filed in the division of the Probate and Family Court located in the county in which either party lives, excepting that the action must be filed in the county where the parties last lived together if one of the parties still resides in that county. 

In Massachusetts, parties may file either a joint Petition for Divorce or a Complaint for Divorce.  The parties will file a joint Petition for Divorce, commonly referred to as a "1A", if they agree to all issues pertaining to the divorce such as the division of marital property, child custody, and spousal support.  A Complaint for Divorce will be filed if the parties do not agree to all issues. 

The parties are co-petitions in a Joint Petition for Divorce, and plaintiff and defendant in a Complaint for Divorce.

Let us walk you through the maze of procedures, forms and information regarding divorce.  We are striving to help people who are contemplating filing for a divorce, information and forms to download to fill out at your convenience.  Please thoroughly read ALL the self-help pages before filing any papers with the Court.   

Below you will find information regarding Divorce.  There are three types of divorces that are filed in our court:

  1. Uncontested - 1A - This is filed with a "Petition" form - Both parties must sign this and other forms associated with this type of divorce proceeding. (Download a sample Petition here)  

  2. No-Fault - This is filed with a "Complaint for Divorce" form.  Only one party needs to sign this Complaint for Divorce.  The other party will be notified by a summons which will be served by a sheriff and will have an opportunity to answer the Complaint. (Download a sample Complaint here)

  3. Fault - This  is filed with a "Complaint for Divorce" form.  Only one party needs to sign this Complaint for Divorce.  The other party will be notified by a summons which will be served by a sheriff and will have an opportunity to answer the Complaint.  (Download a sample complaint here)

For further information on Grounds for Divorce - click here.

Click on one of the types of divorce that you are interested in for further information, procedures and forms.  We have also provided some informational pamphlets below for further reading.  These pamphlets are provided for download in Adobe Acrobat reader.  If you do not have acrobat reader, click here for a free download.

 

Uncontested Divorce - (1A Divorce)

 

Divorce

- In this type of divorce both parties participate in the filing of a document called a Joint Petition for Divorce.  In order to file for this type of divorce, you must have reached an agreement as to all issues (for example, custody, visitation, child support, alimony, division of property and debts, and health insurance coverage.)   - No Fault - In this type of divorce, one party files a document called a Complaint for Divorce claiming "irretrievable breakdown of the marriage."  This type of no fault divorce is used where you do not have an agreement.  It may be used if you are unable to reach an agreement as to all issues (for example, custody, visitation, child support, alimony, division of property and debts and health insurance coverage,) or 

- Fault - if the other party does not agree that there is an irretrievable breakdown of the marriage.  

 

 

 

Below is a list of some brochures and information pages that the Hampshire County Probate and Family Court provides for helpful information regarding divorce.  The following are provided in Acrobat Reader for downloading for your convenience and are provided on the internet.  Click on the links below for further information about each subject.

 

 

Below is a list of outside Links for further information from various sources.  If you wish to be added as a link please contact the Webmaster@hampshireprobate.com for addition.

 

 

 

 
 

 

 

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Copyright 2003 [Hampshire County Probate and Family Court]. All rights reserved.
Revised: August 07, 2013 .