Divorce Without Court in Seattle, Olympia & Tacoma

What is Divorce Without Court

Divorce without court is exactly what it sounds like. There are ways to divorce without ever setting foot in a courtroom. Typically you’ll choose from one of three options: 1) collaborative divorce, 2) mediation, or 3) uncontested divorce.

During your first meeting, we’ll find the divorce option best suited to your family’s needs. The next step is to begin working on the agreement. This may be done in a group, one on one with your lawyer, or at home between you and your spouse. Once we’ve reached an agreement we’ll draft the documents and file the paperwork. Often we file by mail, which means you never have to set foot in a courtroom.

During divorce people lose sleep over three things: who will the judge believe, what will I pay and will my personal life be exposed in public. Divorcing without court solves those issues. You determine what’s best for your family, your costs are predictable and the process is private.

Justin W. Aanenson, Attorney

Benefits of Divorce Without Court

A divorce without court allows you to choose from low conflict, private, and cost controlled processes that are out of the ordinary in most cases. We focus on three court free options, which are shown below.

Collaborative Divorce

Both spouses hire an attorney and negotiate in a private setting with the help of neutral experts.

Divorce Mediation

Reach an agreement with your spouse and work with your lawyer to prepare the paperwork.

Uncontested Divorce

Reach an agreement with your spouse and work with your lawyer to prepare the paperwork.

What to expect from Divorce Without Court

Common questions clients ask about divorce without court

If a person has a felony conviction for child abuse or neglect, spousal abuse, a crime against a child, or a crime involving violence they are permanently disqualified.

Similarly, a person will not pass the home study if they’ve been convicted of a physical assault, sex offense, or a felony not listed above in the past five years.

We recommend three methods to divorce without going to court: uncontested divorce, collaborative divorce, and a mediated divorce. In each case, we work through the issues and then file the paperwork to remove the need to appear in court.


In an uncontested divorce our client provides the basics of an agreement they’ve discussed with their spouse. We analyze the terms and present feedback that will improve the agreement, making it last long term. The goal is to create an agreement that is consistent with the spouse’s initial plan, but strengthened by the input of an attorney.


In a collaborative divorce, each spouse will work directly with their own attorney and negotiations will take place in a group setting. Often outside experts, such as financial planners and child specialists are brought in to help the process. The goal is to reach an agreement, based on a deep understanding of the issues and what’s ideal for the family.


In a mediated divorce, spouses work a mediator to reach an agreement. They can either draft the forms on their own, hire the mediator to draft the forms, or hire an outside attorney. After everything is signed the spouses will submit the documents to the court for finalization.

Your lawyer is your representative in court and can represent you during a divorce without you being present. In a divorce without court, this is common when presenting final documents to the judge.


If a divorce was filed locally, not by mail, you need to request the court to review the final documents in order to make the divorce official. This is done in the ex-parte courtroom. In Washington, your attorney will ask you to sign a Formal Proof Declaration. This document gives your attorney permission to ask the judge to sign the divorce decree on your behalf.


Whether you’re busy with work, unable to find childcare, or live out of state, your attorney will be able to finalize the case with your permission.

Depending on the circumstances your divorce can be finalized without a court hearing. The most common way to finalize a divorce without a hearing in Washington is to file by mail.


Both Lincoln and Wahkiakum County process divorce by mail and finalize the case without a hearing. When you file by mail the clerk’s office will send you a letter with a case number and finalization date. That finalization date is the date that your forms will be reviewed by the court and signed. There is no formal hearing and you do not need to appear in person.


A divorce can also be finalized in ex-parte court. In family law cases, attorneys can bring agreed paperwork to ex-parte court for approval without setting a hearing date. Similarly, if you filed for divorce and your spouse refused to participate, you can request a default and an ex-parte judge can approve your divorce without a hearing.

Testimonials & reviews

A family law firm that often settles out of court with "win, win" solutions for all involved. Resolve the matter instead of fighting in court where only the lawyers win.
Kate Winterbottom
Kate Winterbottom
Justin, the owner of Truce Law, is truly exceptional in every sense. His unwavering dedication to customer satisfaction and employee success sets him apart as a leader in the legal community. Justin goes above and beyond to ensure that each client receives personalized attention and support throughout the divorce or adoption process. His expertise in family law combined with his genuine empathy and understanding make him a trusted advocate for those navigating difficult life transitions. I would not hesitate to refer clients to Justin. Moreover, Justin's commitment to employee success is evident in the positive and supportive work environment he cultivates at Truce Law. By prioritizing the well-being and professional growth of his team, Justin ensures that every member is equipped to deliver exceptional service to clients. I have full confidence in Justin and his team to handle even the most complex family law matters with integrity, compassion, and skill. If you're seeking legal assistance for divorce or adoption, look no further than Justin and Truce Law. You'll be in the best hands possible.
Jeff Bloomfield
Jeff Bloomfield
The team at Truce Law are conscientious and dedicated to truly serving their clients well. I would not hesitate to recommend Truce Law for your Family Law Needs.
Dan Peterson
Dan Peterson
Breaking up is hard. I was an emotional wreck at times. The staff at Truce Law was compassionate and patient; they walked me through it. My opponent was vicious. Truce handled the negotiations with strength, competence, and dignity. Look no further.
David Singleton
David Singleton
Truce Law is simply the best! Divorce is never easy for anyone but having them on your side makes it a whole lot easier! The team was always prompt, communicative and always had my best interests in mind. 10/10!
Stefanie Arnold
Stefanie Arnold
Justin and staff were a great resource through my divorce, highly recommended
Hristiyan Kolev
Hristiyan Kolev
First of all I would like to thank to Justin for his great work! My case was not easy (don’t want to use the word ugly), but thanks to Justin and his team I manage to win the case and being able to be with my child once again which was the goal from the beginning. The process of the divorce took more than a year and he and his team were with me the whole time. Very patient, persistent and knowledgeable. I will always recommend his service. Good luck to everyone out there.
Russ Krause
Russ Krause
If you are looking for a friendly and knowledgeable as well as highly skilled legal team to help you through those family law issues that come up in life, then Truce Law is the place! Competent and friendly staff at all levels puts you at ease. Their rates are very competitive and they are always in communication with you to keep you on top of what they are doing. I highly recommend them to you.
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