Family Law

Matters arising from dissolution of marriage, annulment, paternity, child support, custodial care of or access to children, adoption, injunctions for protection, and all proceedings for modification, enforcement and civil contempt of these actions

Child Support Matters

Although child support matters are filed in the Family Law Division, any inquiries regarding payment or non-payment of support should be directed to the Child Support Division.

Dissolution of Marriage - Types

To obtain a dissolution of marriage in the State of Florida, at least one of the parties must have been a resident of this State for a minimum of six months prior to filing the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage. Although it is not necessary to have an attorney, prior to entering into any agreement or signing any pleading each party may wish to consult with an attorney to ensure that his or her rights are being protected and to be advised of the legal and tax-related consequences of signing any document.

When you file for a dissolution of marriage, the action becomes public record, and the information is available to the general public. Newspapers, in accordance with their policies, may or may not print this information.

There are two types of marriage dissolutions:

  • Dissolution of Marriage
  • Simplified Dissolution of Marriage

Dissolution of Marriage

Regular Dissolutions of Marriage are usually filed with the advice and assistance of an attorney. In some instances, individuals do file for a dissolution of marriage without an attorney.

For individuals wishing to file on their own behalf, Community Legal Services of Mid-Florida, Inc. has developed a package of forms including instructions for filing a Dissolution of Marriage based on certain circumstances and criteria. These forms are available for review and purchase at the Clerk's Office locations as follows: Volusia County Courthouse, DeLand, and Courthouse Annex at City Island as well as the Law Library at both Daytona Beach and DeLand. Individuals may also review the Supreme Court Approved Forms available in the local law libraries and www.flcourts.org .

The Clerk's Office is prohibited by law from providing legal assistance or advice in these matters.

The filing fees for a regular Dissolution of Marriage are listed at the bottom of this page. Fees are non-refundable even if the parties wish to reconcile and dismiss the dissolution.

Simplified Dissolution of Marriage

A Simplified Dissolution of Marriage is a simple, inexpensive legal procedure dissolving a marriage for couples who meet the eligibility requirements. You may file a simplified dissolution of marriage in Florida if all of the following are true:

  • You and/or your spouse have lived in Florida for at least 6 months before filing for a dissolution in Florida.
  • You and your spouse agree that the marriage cannot be saved.
  • You and your spouse have no minor or dependent child(ren) together and the wife is not now pregnant.
  • You and your spouse have worked out how the two of you will divide the things that you both own (your assets) and who will pay what part of the money you both owe (your liabilities), and you are both satisfied with this division.
  • You are not seeking support (alimony) from your spouse, and vice versa.
  • Neither you nor your spouse wish to have any financial information other than that provided in the financial affidavits.
  • You are willing to give up your right to trial and appeal.
  • You and your spouse are both willing to go into the Clerk's Office to sign the petition (not necessarily together).
  • You and your spouse are both willing to go to the final hearing (at the same time).

The Clerk's Office will prepare the primary forms for you based on an information sheet you will be requested to complete. Parties will be placed under oath, and each of you must sign the petition in the presence of a deputy clerk (in the Clerk's Office), although you do not have to go into the Clerk's Office at the same time. You will need to provide picture identification (valid driver's license or official identification card) for the Clerk to witness your signatures.

The following forms are available online and will also need to be completed by the parties. Each will need to be notarized or signed before a deputy clerk:

  • Financial Affidavit, Florida Family Law Rules of Procedure Form 12.902(b) or (c). (Each of you must complete a separate financial affidavit)
  • Notice of Social Security Number, Florida Supreme Court Approved Family Law Form 12.902(j). (Each of you must complete a separate notice)
  • Marital Settlement Agreement, Florida Family Law Rules of Procedure Form 12.902(f)(3). (You will complete one agreement together)

You must prove to the court that the husband and/or wife has/have lived in Florida for more than 6 months before filing the petition for dissolution of marriage. Residence can be proved by one of the following:

  • A valid Florida driver's license, Florida identification card, or voter registration card issued to one of you at least 6 months prior to filing for dissolution of marriage.
  • The testimony of another person who knows that either you or your spouse has resided in Florida for more than 6 months and is available to testify in court.
  • An affidavit. To prove residence by affidavit, use an Affidavit of Corroborating Witness, Florida Supreme Court Approved Family Law Form 12.902(i). This form must be signed by a person who knows that either you or your spouse have lived in Florida for more than 6 months before the date that you filed the petition for dissolution of marriage. This affidavit may be signed in the presence of the Clerk of the Court or in the presence of a notary public, who must affix his or her seal at the proper place on the affidavit.

The filing fee for a Simplified Dissolution of Marriage is listed at the bottom of this page. The fee should be made payable to the 'Clerk of the Circuit Court'. Please note that the filing fee is not refundable should the parties wish to reconcile and dismiss the case.

The Clerk will schedule a hearing before the assigned Judge. The date is set by the Judge's office at the earliest convenient date. Failure to appear at the hearing by either or both of the parties may result in dismissal of the case.

A Final Judgment of Simplified Dissolution of Marriage will be prepared by the Clerk's Office for consideration by the Court on the day of your hearing. At that time, if all of the papers are in order, the judge may grant a final judgment.

Florida Putative Father Registry

If you are an unmarried biological father, you have rights. In order to preserve the right to notice and consent to the adoption of your child, as an unmarried biological father, the “registrant,” you must file a notarized claim of paternity with the Florida Putative Father Registry maintained by the Office of Vital Statistics of the Department of Health which includes confirmation of your willingness and intent to support the child for whom paternity is claimed in accordance with state law. The claim of paternity may be filed at any time before the child's birth, but a claim of paternity may not be filed after the date a petition is filed for termination of parental rights.

The Florida Putative Father Registry Claim of Paternity Form may be obtained at your local office of Department of Health, Office of Vital Statistics, the Department of Children and Families, Clerk of Courts.

Injunctions

There are four types of injunctions for protection:

In an emergency situation always call 911. Volusia County has domestic abuse shelters available 24 hours a day. The phone number is (386) 255-2102, Daytona Beach.

The Clerk's Office will assist a victim with filing a Petition for Injunction Monday - Friday between 8:00 AM and 4:30 PM. After normal business hours, assistance is available by calling the Domestic Abuse Hotline at 1-800-500-1119 or (386) 255-2102, Daytona Beach. All forms are available online.

  • The Petition for Injunction and other paperwork must be prepared and sworn to by the petitioner and filed with the Clerk of the Court.
  • Based on Florida Statutes, there are no filing fees for Petitions for Injunction for Protection Against Domestic, Repeat, Dating, or Sexual Violence.
  • In order for the Court to make a decision in your case, the petition must contain specific facts and circumstances, including dates. The facts are used by the Court to determine if an immediate and present danger of violence exists that would allow the Court to restrain the respondent without notice pending a hearing.
  • You must describe any previous or pending attempts by you to obtain an Injunction for Protection or any other cause of action currently pending between you and the respondent in this or any other county or state and the results. If you require additional relief from the Court, you should complete the paragraphs in the petition pertaining to those sanctions. Other information required on the petition will aid law enforcement agencies in identifying and locating the respondent for service.
  • If filing for an Injunction for Protection Against Domestic or Sexual Violence, you may request at the time of filing that your address be kept confidential.
  • The Clerk's Office will require you to sign all documents under oath, and you are subject to the penalty of perjury.
  • The Clerk's Office will immediately forward your file to the assigned Judge. The Court will determine whether your petition meets the necessary criteria for issuance of a temporary injunction, and a hearing will be scheduled requiring both parties to appear.
  • Once the Judge has rendered a decision, all documents will be returned to the Clerk's Office for processing. A certified copy of the Order and Notice of Hearing will be provided to you to keep on your person at all times. A copy of the petition, financial affidavit, uniform child custody jurisdiction affidavit, notice of hearing and temporary injunction will be forwarded to the Sheriff of the county where the respondent resides. The Sheriff will serve the respondent as soon thereafter as possible.
  • You are required to appear at the hearing to give testimony under oath regarding the exact circumstances of the alleged incident(s). Answer all questions completely. The Judge will also give the respondent the opportunity to testify under oath regarding the respondent's recollection of the alleged incident. The hearing will determine whether a cause of action exists for the Court to enter a permanent injunction based on the testimony of the parties under oath.

You will be provided a copy of the appropriate order promptly after the hearing. This should be kept on your person at all times.

The Clerk's Office will provide the appropriate forms should there be a need for you to modify, extend or enforce the provisions contained in the injunction.

Domestic Violence

Domestic Violence means an assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping, false imprisonment, or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member.

Family or household member means spouses, former spouses, persons related by blood or marriage, persons who are presently residing together as if a family or who have resided together in the past as if a family, and persons who are parents of a child in common regardless of whether they have been married. With the exception of persons who have a child in common, the family or household members must be currently residing or have in the past resided together in the same single dwelling unit.

Repeat Violence

Repeat Violence means two incidents of violence or stalking committed by the respondent, one of which must have been within 6 months of the filing of the petition which are directed against the petitioner or petitioner's family.

Violence means assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery, sexual assault, sexual battery, stalking, aggravated stalking, kidnapping or false imprisonment or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death.

Dating Violence

Dating Violence means violence between individuals who have or have had a continuing and significant relationship of a romantic or intimate nature. The existence of such a relationship will be based on these factors:

  1. A dating relationship must have existed within the past 6 months;
  2. The nature of the relationship must have been characterized by the expectation of affection or sexual involvement between the parties; and
  3. The frequency and type of interaction between the persons involved in the relationship must have included that the persons have been involved over time and on a continuous basis during the course of the relationship. This does not include violence in a casual acquaintanceship or violence between individuals who only have engaged in ordinary fraternization in a business or social context.

Sexual Violence

Sexual Violence means any one incident of:

  1. Sexual Battery as defined in Chapter 794;
  2. A lewd or lascivious act, as defined in Chapter 800, committed upon or in the presence of a person younger than 16 years of age;
  3. Luring or enticing a child, as described in Chapter 787;
  4. Sexual performance by a child, as described in Chapter 827; or
  5. Any other forcible felony wherein a sexual act is committed or attempted, regardless of whether criminal charges based on the incident were filed, reduced, or dismissed by the State Attorney.

Family Law

Family Law - Circuit Court

Filing Fees

Dissolution of Marriage 408.00
Simplified Dissolution of Marriage 411.50
Petitions for Domestic Relations pursuant to Chapters 39, 61, 741, 742, 747, 752 and 753 (support, visitation, custody and paternity) 300.00
Counterpetition in any of the above 295.00
Petitions for Domestic Relations (name change, adoption, delayed birth certificate) 400.00
Counterpetition in any of the above 395.00
Reopen 50.00
Petition for Modification of Dissolution of Marriage 50.00

Other Fees

Summons Issuance, per summons 10.00
Enforcement of Foreign Judgment (in addition to filing fees) 42.00
Attorney Appearance Pro Hac Vice 100.00
Simplified Dissolution of Marriage Packet 4.80
Mediation Fees
Combined income up to $50,000 60.00
Combined income is over $50,000 and under $100,000 120.00
Child Support and Alimony Payments, per payment (minimum $1.00, maximum $5.25) 4%
Notice of Delinquency to Obligor 25.00
Final Judgment Fee 25.00
Payoff Statement 25.00
Driver's License Suspension due to delinquency 25.00
Contesting Delinquency Fee 25.00