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Montana Divorce Forms
This is a list of the most commonly filed divorce forms for the state of Montana. Following the list is a brief summary of each form and its purpose. This list of forms is not exhaustive and not all forms listed are required for every divorce. Due to unique case situations and special divorce filing procedures in Montana, certain forms may or may not be required by the Montana courts.
Affidavit for Publication of Summons
The Affidavit for Publication of Summons must be filed by the Petitioner when he or she cannot serve a Respondent who cannot or will not be located to accept Service of Process. The Affidavit attests to the diligent effort to locate the missing spouse. It is filed with an Order for Publication of Summons and a Summons for Publication. The Summons is then published in a newspaper.
Declaration of Disclosure
The Final Declaration of Disclosure of Assets, Debts, Income and Expenses profiles the finances of the spouses, individually and jointly. In Joint Petitions for Dissolution, both spouses are required to state that they have exchanged this information.
The Decree or the Decree (dissolution with children) ends the marriage. The document includes Findings of Facts and Conclusions of Law.
The Petitioner may ask the court to enter a Default Judgment against the Respondent if after 21 days, the Respondent has not responded to the Summons. He or she must prepare a Request of Entry of Default, Application for Default Judgment, and Waiver of Final Disclosure Requirements.
Notice and Acknowledgment to CSED
The Notice and Acknowledgment to Child Support Enforcement Division stipulates third-party enforcement of child support.
Notice and Acknowledgment
The Notice and Acknowledgment of Receipt of Summons and Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, signed by the Petitioner and notarized, certifies that the Respondent waives formal Sheriff’s service of the divorce papers. The Notice is sent with a Summons and Temporary Restraining Order, Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, the Petitioner’s Declaration of Assets, Debts, Income and Expenses and the Petitioner’s Proposed Parenting Plan.
Notice of Entry of Decree
The Notice of Entry of Decree, which must be notarized, informs the Respondent that the Final Decree of Dissolution has been entered. It is served on the Respondent with a conformed copy of the Final Decree.
Notice of Filing Child Support Guidelines Affidavit
Both spouses use the Notice of Filing Child Support Guidelines Affidavit to inform each other that each has filed the Child Support Guidelines Affidavit, which is used to determine child support.
Order of Publication of Summons
This is a Court Order permitting the Petitioner to serve the Respondent by publication of the Summons.
In filing, one of four petitions for dissolution is used, depending on the situation of the parties. They are as follows: When one spouse files as an individual, either a Petition for Dissolution (no children), or a Petition for Dissolution (with children). When the spouses file together, either a Joint Petition for Dissolution (no children), or a Joint Petition for Dissolution (with children).
Both spouses may file proposed or final Parenting Plans, which stipulate the terms and conditions of custody and visitation.
Praecipe for Service
The Praecipe for Service directs the Sheriff to serve the Respondent the divorce papers in the event that he or she cannot be served by mail.
Request for Hearing and Order Granting Hearing
The Request and Order, filed by the Petitioner, asks the court to schedule and order a dissolution hearing.
Summons and TRO
The Summons puts the respondent on notice of the action. It is served with a Temporary Restraining Order, which prohibits the parties from dissipating financial assets subject to distribution.
Summons for Publication
The Summons for Publication, signed by the Clerk of the Court, must be filed when a Respondent cannot or will not be located and he is she must be served by publication.
Consent to Entry of Decree
In joint filings, both parties sign the Consent to Entry of Decree, certifying that each agrees to the action and its terms and conditions.
Vital Statistics Reporting Form
This form must be filed in all dissolutions. It records the statistical profiles of all the facts of the dissolution, including child support. It is used for record keeping purposes.
Montana law calls for equitable division of property. While equitable implies fair, it does not necessarily mean equal. The court, however, encourages spouses to come to an agreement on their own regarding marital property. If the court must intervene, it will take several factors into account. Considerations include, but are not limited to, whether or not one spouse will receive alimony payments, the earning capacity of both spouses, length of the marriage, contribution of the homemaker if applicable, custody arrangements, and debts and age.
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