Tacoma Divorce Attorneys

Compassionate counsel, experienced representation

Divorce can be one of the most frightening and emotionally draining events in your life, but with the guidance of one of our Tacoma divorce attorneys, the process does not need to be overwhelming.

Washington is a “no-fault” divorce state. This means that either you or your spouse may file for divorce without needing to provide any reason for the request.

The legal process starts when you file for divorce with the court. Our Tacoma divorce lawyers will prepare the necessary documents to start your divorce and have your spouse “served” with them. Once this occurs, you must wait a minimum of 90 days before the court will enter the final papers that legally end your marriage.

Our skilled and compassionate Tacoma divorce attorneys understand that people come to the divorce process with serious questions:

  • How will divorce impact our children?
  • How will I support myself?
  • Where will I live?
  • How will we divide our property?

We invite you to set up an appointment with one of our divorce attorneys. Tacoma, WA, and the greater Pierce County area have been turning to Helland Law Group for answers to tough questions like those above for over 35 years.

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Questions about Divorce? Ask Slater.

How much will this cost? ▾

Wow. A question that gets right to the point. Reminds me of a few German Shepherds I’ve met. A divorce can be as inexpensive or as expensive as the parties involved make it. The cost of a divorce is largely determined by the amount of attorney time required. Therefore, the more the parties are able to cooperate and work together, the less the divorce will likely cost.

I think my spouse has considerable assets that he or she never disclosed to the court at the time of our divorce. Can I do anything?▾

Yes. Washington law does allow certain relief for “omitted property” — this is lawyer talk for property that was not addressed in the divorce decree either because of an accident or deception. However, it is super important to know that there are time frames in which a case can be pursued. If you believe that there was property omitted from your decree, or if you believe a mistake was made, it is important to contact an attorney immediately.

What happens to property that was omitted from the divorce decree?▾

Property that has been omitted from a divorce is held as tenants in common by you and your spouse. What does “tenants in common” mean in English? Basically it refers to property that isn’t specifically included in a divorce decree and is therefore considered shared property in community property states. The court has the ultimate ability to divide or award the property based upon what is fair and equitable considering all factors. One of our talented Tacoma divorce attorneys can help you discover if your spouse has omitted any property from a divorce decree that you may have partial rights to.

Do I need to go to court to get divorced?▾

It depends. If you do your divorce on your own, you will need to go to court at least once. However, if you have one of our attorneys represent you, it is possible to never have to step into a courtroom ― but obviously this depends on your individual case.

Can't I divorce without an attorney? ▾

You bet. But to be honest, I wouldn't advise it. Unfortunately, even a divorce that seems simple may have unforeseen problems lurking just below the surface. Although it is possible to file for divorce without an attorney, your chance of falling victim to an unforeseen legal problem drastically increases when you divorce without counsel. Therefore, we strongly encourage you to consult with a Tacoma divorce attorney to help determine what issues might come up in your divorce process.

Can I get my spouse to pay for the divorce? ▾

In Washington, it is possible for the court to order your spouse to pay some or all of your legal costs. The determination of whether or not the court orders such payment, and the amount of the payment, comes down to individual factors unique to your case but they often include such things as financial resources of the parties, moral conduct, and education among other factors.

What is a community property state?▾

Washington is part of a handful of states considered “community property states.” This means that there is a presumption that all property acquired during the course of a marriage belongs to the marital community — that’s lawyer talk for both members of a marriage.

What is the difference between divorce and legal separation?▾

Good question. Divorce involves legally ending your marriage, dividing all your assets and debts, setting up a parenting plan (if you have children), and determining child support. After becoming divorced, you are free to remarry or do anything that a single person can legally do. A legal separation does everything a divorce does, except it leaves you legally married, and therefore, you cannot legally remarry. People often legally separate if health care benefits, or other benefits, are available to them through their spouse’s employment that they wish to remain on. There may be other considerations to discuss with one of our Tacoma divorce attorneys at our offices. They can help you choose which route is better for you and your family.

Does my spouse need to live in Washington in order for me to get a divorce here? ▾

Nope. Washington allows you to file for divorce in any county in the state, providing that you have a substantial relationship to Washington State. The venue — this is “lawyer speak” for which county can hear your case —  is determined by a variety of factors, including your tie or your spouse’s tie to any given county in the State. Normally, it’s best to file in a county where you or your spouse resides. However, where to file is an issue best addressed with a Tacoma divorce attorney.

Do your divorce attorneys handle divorces in Tribal Court? ▾

Yes. We have attorneys that are licensed to practice in tribal court, state courts, and in the western district of Washington federal court.

Do your Tacoma divorce attorneys handle military divorces? ▾

Yes. I’ve greeted quite a few men and women in uniform at the door of our legal offices. It’s always our pleasure to serve those who serve and protect us. Our office is very familiar with the issues that face the men and women serving in the armed forces. We are very knowledgeable regarding the unique issues confronted when one or both spouses is serving in the armed forces, and we know how to help you navigate through many of the common issues facing military divorces.