Legal Document Drafting Services

Legal Document Services Vs. Paralegals

Filing any legal documents can be stressful without the right guidance. Many people tend to think that the only way to begin a legal case requires help from an attorney or paralegal. However, using a document filing service can help simplify, expedite, and file your documents just as well as a paralegal can, if not better.

What Is a Legal Document Preparation Service?

A legal document preparation service is an organization that helps individuals understand and file different kinds of legal documents. The Arizona Supreme Court authorizes only Certified Legal Document Preparers to offer services to the general public.

Without this accreditation, a legal document preparation service that drafts legal documents for a person or a business without the guidance of an attorney is practicing law without a license. The only objective of the Arizona Supreme Court’s certification and oversight of the people and businesses creating legal documents is to safeguard the public.

For example, if you want to file for a divorce but need help figuring out the process, you may need to seek assistance with your filing. By contacting a legal document preparation service, you can get the necessary help you need for filing your Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with the added legal oversight provided by certified legal professionals.

An attorney is not legally necessary for filing these petitions, but the added guidance from a legal document preparation service can help you feel secure in the legal legitimacy of your documents.

Legal Document Services

Legal Document Services

Typically, document preparation services in Arizona work within family law matters. Family law consists of issues between individuals in a relationship with one another, either by blood or marriage. These matters often involve changing relationships or marital statuses, but all involve familial relationships.

Depending on the situation, certain documents must be filed to accomplish one of these relationship changes.

Some of the most common document filings related to family law include:

Divorce Filings

The decision to file for divorce is rarely easy, but sometimes, it can be necessary. The first step in getting a divorce begins with filing a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage. These filings are submitted by a petitioner, and to proceed, the respondent (the other spouse) must be notified of the filing.

If all issues in the case are agreed upon by both parties, the case may move forward once the parties file a consent decree. The filing party may request a default judgment if the Petition was submitted, served to the opposing party, and no response has been submitted in the given time frame.

For covenant marriages, this process can be a bit more complicated as supplemental information and directives are required to continue the divorce. When seeking a divorce, a petitioner in a covenant marriage must prove the other party committed an act that disrupted the marriage, such as adultery, and that marriage counseling efforts have not resolved that dispute. From there, the Petition and evidence can be submitted and the proceedings can continue.

Suggested Reading: Arizona Divorce Guide

Custody Filings

To create a plan for child custody, known as legal decision-making and parenting time in Arizona, parents must file an extensive list of legal documents that outline their custody plans. The Sensitive Data Cover Form with Children, summons, Affidavit Regarding Minor Children, Order and Notification to Attend Parenting Education or Information Classes, and a Parenting Plan should all be completed by divorcing and unmarried parents, respectively.

Creating a unique parenting plan for your particular situation is recommended, allowing parents to create a visitation schedule that suits their needs and the needs of their child. Parents who are divorcing should also fill out a Notice of Your Rights Regarding Health Insurance Coverage, a Preliminary Injunction, a Notice Regarding Creditors, a Petition for Dissolution of a Non-Covenant Marriage with Minor Children, and a Petition for Legal Separation with Minor Children.

Requests for Child Support

Before beginning the process of filing for child support, parents must confirm paternity and compile documents first. The second parent’s name, Social Security number, birth certificates for each child, and, if available, their most recent employer must also be provided.

Any children mentioned on the application should have as much documentation as possible. Birth records, copies of paternity orders, copies of support orders from the past or present, a list of payments given to you personally, and adoption documents are all relevant and should be included.

If you have ever married, you must present copies of any marriage certificates or any divorce judgments you have regarding any marriages. Once all the necessary identification information is collected, you can fill out an application for Title IV-D Child Support Assistance.

The documentation you collect about you, your co-parent, and your child or children are necessary for these filings. You must fill out a separate sheet for every individual child with your application for assistance if you are requesting benefits for multiple children who share the same father. Once completed, this information can be sent to Arizona Child Support Services.

Suggested Reading: Ways to Avoid a Child’s Split Loyalty

Order Modifications

For some custody or support situations, modifying a pre-existing order is necessary to make the situation sustainable. When parents desire to change legal decision-making and parenting time, they can file a Petition to Change Legal Decision-Making, Parenting Time arrangements set by the court and Child Support systems.

According to Arizona law, even if neither parent requests a change in child support, family courts must readjust it whenever the current parenting time situation is altered. However, being proactive about updating these orders by submitting your order modifications is the best way to efficiently get these orders changed.

Name Changes

Name changes can be initiated for several reasons, ranging from divorce to a requested identity change. As an adult, the necessary forms to complete to apply for a name change include an Order of Name Change, a Petition for Change of Name (also known as an Application for Change of Name), and a Notice of Hearing Regarding an Application for Change of Name.

If the court believes that a name change would impact the rights of someone else, such as a debtor or the co-parent of a shared child, it may not be permitted. It is critical to understand that even after changing your name, you remain the same person. You will just go by a different name, but you will still be subject to the same legal duties and obligations.

Differences Between a Paralegal and a Document Handling Service

Attorney reviewing legal paperwork

Under the direction of a lawyer, paralegals may assist with document preparation, filing, organizing evidence and documentation for review by an attorney, and synthesizing reports for trial preparation. They may also aid in fostering interactions with clients, witnesses, attorneys, and other parties associated with a case.

One of the most important things to keep in mind while hiring and working with a paralegal is that they must be supervised by lawyer during all stages of their work. In addition, paralegals cannot give you legal advice; only an attorney is qualified to do so.

Legal document preparers are specially qualified to assist you in appropriately filling out and filing your legal paperwork without the oversight of an attorney, though some may be attorneys themselves. In this capacity, they are unable to provide you with legal counsel or act as your advocate in court.

A legal document preparation service can help you with a variety of legal issues, including divorce filing, changing child support obligations, and more. Your document preparer will be aware of their limitations due to their training and will, if necessary, recommend you to an experienced attorney.

Should I Hire a Paralegal for Divorce?

Legally speaking, you do not need to have a paralegal or lawyer assist you with the divorce process. Every situation is different, and understanding what makes a document preparation service different from hiring a paralegal is essential to decide what route is best for you.

Some of the benefits that come from hiring a legal document service include the following:

Cost Efficiency

Lawyers, and by extension paralegals, are all paid by the hour. This means that the longer it takes for them to analyze your situation and help you file your documents, the more you end up paying for their services. Document filing services can help streamline this process, which can help save you money long-term.

Accuracy of Filings

Trying to navigate your filings alone can lead to glaring mistakes that get your information either dismissed or completely thrown out. Hiring a legal document service is best for making sure that you accurately represent your claims to the court, as they can ensure your filings are reviewed by legal professionals before they are officially submitted.

Easy Navigation of the Process

Ease of filing goes hand in hand with the accuracy of your filings. One of the reasons filing these documents can be so stressful is how tricky they are to navigate. With help from an expert legal document filing service, you can be sure that any minor missteps or mistakes are properly addressed before they are finally submitted.


For those that need to handle multiple document filings for the same cause or those who want to accomplish multiple different legal tasks, a legal document filing service can assist you with multiple orders at once. This can further streamline the filing process. By contrast, if you choose to work with a paralegal to manage multiple filings, the price for these services could become hard to manage.

Suggested Reading: Do I Need a Lawyer to Get a Divorce


Disadvantages to Document Filing Services

The only disadvantage of choosing a document preparer instead of a lawyer is that their services are limited to document preparation, case handling, and case management. In this regard, you may require legal assistance if your filing is complex or has special problems. A legal document preparer is expressly prohibited from providing legal advice or responding to inquiries regarding your legal options. A legal document preparer is unable to act as your legal representative in court.

While a paralegal may provide you with the quick help of a lawyer, they are also limited in their abilities. Document filing services are much more straightforward, cost-effective, and user-friendly compared to hiring a paralegal. In situations where more legal help is needed, a legal document preparer can refer you to a lawyer to help resolve your issue.

File Your Family Law Documents with Draft My Legal Docs

File Your Family Law Documents

Filing legal documents requires attention to detail, comprehensive information gathering, and an understanding of how these filings work. Fortunately, legal document services can help guide you through the filing process, taking some of the stress that comes with these decisions off of your shoulders.

At Draft My Legal Docs, we can help you put together and submit your legal filings, ensuring that they are legally sound before they get sent out. For more information on our services, contact us today.

Cheap AZ Divorce

Is Divorce Expensive in Arizona?

Obtaining an inexpensive divorce in Arizona can be possible if the right circumstances are met. If you and your spouse are divorcing, you can avoid an expensive court hearing with help from legal document services like Draft My Legal Docs. Here is everything you need to know about how divorce works in Arizona, so you can ensure you achieve the results you want at the lowest cost.

Requirements for Getting a Divorce in Arizona

Arizona is what’s known as a “no-fault” state. That means that in Arizona, couples do not need to provide a reason for divorce beyond the fact that they no longer get along and do not wish to remain married. This is known as “irreconcilable differences” and means one spouse does not have to be found “at fault” for the marriage’s dissolving.

However, there are residency and filing requirements. For instance, if neither you nor your spouse has lived in the state for 90 days, you can’t file for a divorce in Arizona. In addition, the petition for dissolution must be filed with the clerk of the court, and a copy must then be served to your soon-to-be ex by someone other than yourself, including a process server or sheriff. Keep in mind that a process server will charge a fee, while a sheriff can do so for free.

If your partner chooses to contest the divorce, they must file a response. If they do not choose to contest, they can begin working with you to settle the terms of your divorce or simply enter no response at all. This may result in a default judgment, but you must wait 60 days from the service date to finalize the divorce. However, with court schedules and other requirements, most divorces will not be settled this quickly.

Expense of Getting a Divorce in Arizona

Typical Costs for Divorce

In 2022, Forbes explained that the median cost for a divorce in the United States was $7,000, while the national average was much higher, ranging between $15,000 to $20,000. This may seem daunting, but it doesn’t mean that you need to spend a great deal of money to get divorced in Arizona.

The cost of your divorce will depend on a few essential factors, such as whether your spouse contests the divorce, whether you choose to hire an attorney, filing costs, court costs, the cost of a process server, and whether there are any complexities like child custody, child support, complicated assets, and more that will result in additional time in court. In general, the more agreeable you and your spouse are – and the fewer complications that must be settled in the courtroom setting – the fewer expenses you’ll accrue during the divorce process. Take a look at some of the most common costs of divorcing to learn what you can expect.

When you first file for a divorce, you have to pay a fee for the “petition for dissolution of marriage.” Such a fee will be quickly followed up by a second payment if you use a process server to serve the petition to your spouse. Women filing for divorce also may file paperwork to restore their maiden name, and parents filing will need to file paperwork to attend a parent education class so they can determine aspects like child custody and child support.

The bulk of the cost of divorce comes from attorney fees, especially if the divorce is contentious and must be settled in a courtroom. It’s difficult to determine exactly how much a divorce lawyer would cost in a particular situation, as every divorce is different. So, too, is every attorney’s pricing structure. However, divorces that cannot be solved amicably without lengthy litigation can cost tens of thousands of dollars above and beyond the cost of a simple divorce in Arizona.

Uncontested Divorce

As mentioned, an uncontested divorce occurs when your spouse does not contest the dissolution of the marriage. They can do so by working with you to compromise on the terms of the split or by not responding to the petition for dissolution and allowing the court to issue a default judgment in your favor. If you and your spouse are working together to create a mutually agreeable divorce agreement, you can avoid spending a great deal of time in a courtroom at a series of divorce hearings.

However, this may be easier said than done, which is why it’s so common for divorcing spouses to end up in court.

Unless you have a prenuptial agreement that has pre-determined the terms of your divorce for you, you and your spouse will need to decide the following:

  • How to divide your assets and debts according to Arizona’s community property laws
  • Whether either spouse should receive spousal maintenance (alimony)
  • The amount of parenting time and legal decision-making rights both parents will have if there are children involved
  • Child support payments, if there are children involved
If you and your spouse agree on each of the aspects above, you can file a consent decree and avoid spending time in court other than to have the judge approve your divorce agreement and issue the final divorce order. Uncontested divorces are almost always less expensive than contested divorces for this reason.

Contested Divorce

A contested divorce, where one spouse does not agree to the divorce or the terms of the divorce, will often become more expensive because the spouses often feel the need to hire attorneys to navigate this more complex case. While not all contested divorce cases end in a contentious court battle, this is one possible outcome. This process can take much longer than an uncontested divorce and often involves other decision-making strategies that can require additional funds.

Before resorting to a court hearing, divorcing spouses who need assistance coming to an agreement typically undergo mediation with an objective, third-party mediator. Mediation is cheaper than going to court, and the goal is for it to end with both spouses in agreement without the need for litigation. However, mediation can cost up to $500 per hour, and if it is unsuccessful, the couple will still need to attend divorce hearings.

Do I Need a Lawyer to Get a Divorce in AZ?

Do you need an attorney to get a divorce? When it comes to calculating the cost of a divorce, most of that cost can be attributed to hiring one or more attorneys for the duration of the process. Court costs and document filing fees are much less expensive than the alternative of paying an attorney for several months of help, as even an uncontested divorce can take at least three months to settle properly. It is not only possible to divorce in Arizona without an attorney, but it is also much less expensive. For example, if you and your spouse believe that you can settle your differences without needing a lawyer’s help, you may only need to pay the basic filing fees.

However, it’s important to note that divorce is a complex issue, and there are a great number of equally complex documents that must be drafted and filed in a timely manner. In addition, divorce tends to be an emotionally charged, exhausting, and stressful affair, and divorce can be taxing on even the most prepared individuals. To ensure the divorce process goes as quickly and smoothly as possible, it is essential to ensure all documents are completed in full and submitted to the court on time.

Controlling the Cost of Divorce

Inexpensive Divorce in Arizona

In Arizona, a divorce doesn’t need to be expensive or time-consuming. While it’s impossible to plan for everything, and every relationship will have unique complexities when it’s time to finalize the divorce, there are some ways you can reduce the cost of your

Be Cooperative

Being willing to listen and cooperate can go a long way in making sure the marriage ends peacefully and inexpensively. While this does require cooperation from both you and your ex-spouse, kindness can prevent your case from becoming a court hearing. Consider making a list of all the things you and your spouse agree on, then calmly discussing the others causing disagreement. If you can peacefully negotiate issues like the division of property and parenting time, you can save yourself the costs of multiple divorce hearings, attorney’s fees, and mediation. If you do need to proceed to mediation, you can save time and money by only discussing those things that are causing disagreement.

Be Prepared

As you and your partner untangle your finances, deal with child custody, and more, it is essential to get educated regarding these topics. Get to know your finances by obtaining your credit report, evaluating your property, and investigating your spouse’s share of the assets as much as possible. Then, research your rights regarding these important topics. You won’t need to rely on your spouse’s word regarding how the process should occur, and you can assert yourself without being unfair or aggressive.

Pick Your Battles

Don’t let your emotions guide you. While it may seem unfair that your spouse also wants the car you both worked to pay off, for example, spending months arguing over it in court can cost you far more than the car’s value. Be prepared to compromise, especially if it will save you money in the end.

Use a Legal Document Service

Even if you and your spouse agree on all aspects of your divorce agreement, you will still need to carefully create and file a number of legal documents on a strict schedule as dictated by the court – mistakes can cost you extra time in court, additional filing fees, and may even damage your case. This is a key reason many people choose to hire an attorney to manage their divorce.

However, a legal document service can file divorce documents much more affordably than a firm of family law attorneys. The best services are operated by full-fledged attorneys who will consult with you to determine your needs before drafting your documents and offer unlimited revisions to give you the best chance of success in your case. You’ll be able to avoid both attorneys’ fees and the risk of lengthening your time in divorce court due to mistakes or missed deadlines.

Experienced Divorce Attorneys in Arizona

Efficient Divorce in Arizona

Divorce can be a stressful process even if you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse are divorcing amicably. When you add in the costs of settling, dividing finances, and other endeavors that become necessary in divorce, the process can quickly become expensive.

Draft My Legal Docs is operated by expert family law attorneys who can draft and file family law documents you need to keep as much of your divorce out of the courtroom as possible. Best of all, we offer consultations and revisions to ensure your most critical documents are correct and beneficial to your case. Browse our affordable divorce services in Arizona to learn more about how we can help you divorce at a lower cost.

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