No part of divorce is fun, but for many in Mendocino County, CA, the hardest part is dealing with the legal process. While it’s easy to focus on the emotional toll of divorce, dealing with administrative records and filling in cumbersome paperwork presents a serious burden for many. It doesn’t have to be, though, and we can show you how to file for divorce in Mendocino County without even hiring a lawyer under the right circumstances. Read on as we help you unpack the entire process so that you can make an informed decision about your divorce situation.

“Very professional, excellent follow up and easy to work with. I will recommend them often! The staff rocks!”

Gene A.

“I can’t say enough about the level of service and professionalism I received working with A People’s Choice. Emails were always responded to quickly and thoughtfully. They really care about the process and helping you get the best result with no up-selling. Of course they can’t provide legal advice, but I was referred to an attorney when I needed some questions answered who was very reasonable and easy to get a hold of as well. The process played out according to plan and I ended up saving a lot of money by going with A People’s Choice over an attorney.”

M. Rice

“A People’s Choice helped me with my QDRO. They were very professional and very honest. They saved me a lot of money by having them do all the paper work. There was no hidden fees. I would recommend A People’s Choice for any of your needs. They are very knowledgeable in what they do. Thank you A People’s Choice for all your help!”

Debra H.

“A People’s Choice is extremely customer orientated and friendly.  Their service was fast and reliable. in the future, should I need their services again, I will not hesitate to call them. All e-mails were answered with either a phone call or e-mail sometimes even late at night


“I would just like to comment on what a great job A People’s Choice did with my divorce. I have just received the final judgement and could not be happier. They told me up front what the cost would be. They also let me know how they keep the cost down by communicating through email. I also appreciated how when I had a question they got back with me in the day or in the evening. Thank You for you quick responses. A People’s Choice is a good deal for the consumer.”

R. Leyva

“I needed help understanding and filling out legal documents but I didn’t have enough money to pay for an attorney. I searched the internet for a short period of time looking for help and when I found A People’s Choice, I was relieved to know that I would get the exact service that I needed at an affordable price. The staff was very professional and helpful with my legal documents. They worked around my schedule and responded to my emails on a timely manner. They took care of all the paper work and filing and kept me posted. I would highly recommend A People’s Choice for your legal documents as you will get outstanding service at an affordable price. “

Sharon B.

“I highly recommend A People’s Choice.The customer service and professionalism is exceptional. My documents were delivered to me quickly and accurately. I didn’t contact them until late on Thursday afternoon and had everything in hand to be at the County Government Center by 8:00am on Friday morning. Compared to using an attorney for complete paperwork, this service is only a fraction of the cost, more responsive, and better suited to quickly completing complicated court forms. “

Linda F.

The service provided by A People’s Choice was very professional and comprehensive. We have used A People’s Choice on a previous occasion and were completely satisfied. We would highly recommend A People’s Choice to anyone!

R. Betancourt

“This team is efficient, professional, ethical and easy to work with. Any of my questions were responded to immediately. They did everything they could to help me. I highly recommend their services.”

Leigh A.

“A People’s Choice is awesome! They made the legal documentation process painless. I highly recommend A People’s Choice. The name says it all.”

Eric J.

“Great service. Highly professional and efficient creating legal documents. I am completely satisfied and highly recommend them to others. I am so glad I found you on the internet. People who are looking for professional legal services look no further, try A People’s Choice.”

Radtech N.

“I just recently moved to the Ventura area and didn’t know of any companies to help me with my legal paperwork. I am glad I chose A People’s Choice. They were very friendly and helped me with my documents in a very efficient way in very little time. Give them a try and you will be writing a positive review just as I did.”

D. Buelna

Made the process so easy for me. Also VERY prompt replies through email. So glad I used their services.

Kristina C.

“Great way to get your divorce processed without attorneys for approx. $495. There were a few small hiccups with the documents, but nothing major, which I caught when I reviewed. I am happy with their service, efficient and organized, and would recommend them for filing a divorce that is mutually settled and skip the attorneys. Note: They are not process servers, so find your own server, or if you can do it yourself and save the $$. Thanks for a job well done!”

Bud P.

“A People’s Choice helped me to complete Child Custody modification paperwork. After looking online and trying to figure out how to do it myself, I decided to search Yelp for help. No disappointment here. The service was easy and painless. It might have been nice to have a discussion by phone, but it was still quite easy and quick via email. Overall, the process was simple and I would use A People’s Choice again. I am pleased.”

Michael J.

“A People’s Choice prepares legal documents so you can represent yourself and still look like you know what you’re doing. I used their services recently and found them to be professional as well as extremely helpful. I couldn’t be happier.”

Evan J.

“This company is excellent! They helped me get through all of my paperwork, submitted it to the court, and now everything is complete. Everything was clear and almost too easy. I saved thousands of dollars!”

Seth M.

I have worked with A People’s Choice since September 2013.  They are very knowledgeable and experienced.  Their work is done professionally and timely.  They show a real concern for my situation.  I recommend you give them the opportunity to be of service to you.”

D. Echeverra

“Divorce is usually never pleasant but A People’s Choice made it much easier than it would have been if we tried to do the divorce paperwork on our own. They were very quick to respond to us and always took the time to answer all of our questions thoroughly, in addition to quickly. I would highly recommend them for handling divorce paperwork.”

Susan Z.

“Lightning fast response, I had my very simple document on the same day as my order for the very fair and reasonable price of $325 (including the rush fee!) compared to my attorney who quoted me 3 weeks and $2500. I will definitely use these folks again and highly recommend them!”

L. Carnes

“I was very happy with the service received. They were extremely responsive by phone and email and completed the document in less than 24 hours! All questions were answered promptly. I would highly recommend this service to anyone needing a legal document prepared!”


“Super prices, great service, I can’t say enough about this place. We had A People’s Choice help us with a trust and POA. They are the best!”

Jessica S.

“We love A People Choice. It’s legally run and professional. Everyone has to have a recommendation and license. Highly recommended.”

Christy C.

Extremely satisfied with the performance of A People’s Choice. The communication was excellent and all was handled in a timely efficient manner.

Pam T.

“A People’s Choice is a great option to get legal documents prepared inexpensively. They offer a very professional, low-cost service for all sorts of legal paperwork, from living trusts to divorce, bankruptcy and everything in between. I always received a prompt reply to my inquiries and found the legal guide they gave me extremely helpful and informative. If you know what you want to do, don’t need legal advice and just need help preparing legal paperwork, I strongly recommend calling this company. You won’t be disappointed and will save lots of money as compared to using an expensive attorney!”

Kathryn R.

“I was in need of some serious help and didn’t know what to do. I had contacted a lawyer and he wanted to charge me $1800.00. Then I found A People’s Choice. They were great. They got my paper work started and at a much lower cost, and steered me, with the help of lots of paper work, in the right direction. I am very grateful for the company’s services and would recommend them to any one that may need the services they offer. Thank you again.”

April R.

“I want to personally thank the staff at A People’s Choice for making my divorce process so simple and painless . From my 1st contact in the office they were was warm and friendly and took the time to explain each step in a very simple and quick manner .Filing for a divorce can be a difficult and painful process and the staff was extremely professional and clear in all guidance and explanations. I highly recommend A People’s Choice.”

C. Hannon

“A People’s Choice – Saved me time, money & hardship. The people are professional and a pleasure to work with, I totally recommend them to everyone! I will used them for all my legal documents in the future. Thank you!”

C. Lazalde

“Thank you A People’s Choice for saving me all the headaches when I thought I could save money and file my own divorce paperwork. The court clerks offer no assistance whatsoever with simple questions and handed me another packet to figure out on my own. Trust me, the best advice I can give you is to call A People’s Choice first. They typed up my paperwork and my divorce was final in two weeks! I am so grateful to them and I would highly recommend them to everyone.”

L. Bayer

“When I first saw all the documents required to file I was overwhelmed at the thought of it all. I was already dealing with the stress of everything else and did not want to deal with the courts, a mountain load of paperwork and trips to file as well. When I looked around, I saw A People’s Choice had some great reviews and a decent price. I am VERY happy that I went with A People’s Choice. They were very, very helpful, Sandy was very nice and patient with me, despite all of my questions. With her assistance she helped to make this difficult time much easier by making the tedious paperwork process very easy and it didn’t take too much time at all! I definitely recommend A People’s Choice.”


“I used A People’s Choice for filing divorce paperwork for an uncontested divorce. The price was very affordable and fair. Excellent service throughout. Not being able to call and talk on the phone worried me at first but they responded to every email extremely quickly. There directions were very easy to understand and they had no problem explaining something multiple times if I had questions or did not fully understand the directions. Will definitely use them again for any other legal documents I might need help with in the future.”

Frank M.

“I’m so glad I found this company to handle my divorce. They were very professional and detail oriented. They answered all of my (many) questions and kept me informed along the way. They handled everything for me from hundreds of miles away and made it pretty seamless. The pricing was in the exact range we were looking for. Very honest company and great to work with. Highly recommend them to anyone!”

Jessica J.

“Can not remember how I found A People’s Choice. I think it was through a web search. In any case I found the company and have been and am completely satisfied with the service provided. The person I worked with (Sandra) was very friendly whenever we spoke on the phone and always responded promptly to any emails. The answers were always clear. The entire process was smooth and painless. I would recommend A People’s Choice without hesitation.”

Les A.

“I had the opportunity to use A People’s Choice again, Wow doesn’t say enough for the way the staff was able to get me in and out and all my answers answered. Very Professional, Organized and Friendly. I highly recommend!”

Debbie E.

“I was overwhelmed with my divorce,custody and child support paperwork Sandy at People’s Choice made everything so much easier and really put my mind at ease. I couldn’t be happier with their assistance and it really made all the process speed up for me. Thank you so much for all your help.”

Samantha R.

“How much is peace of mind worth to you? This company of hardworking, caring individuals will help you get the job done in the quickest, most efficient way. Conveniently located. Check it out. Thank you!”

Diana K.

“I recently required the help of A People’s Choice, Inc. and found them to be entirely professional. Everything was done in short order yet all was explained to my satisfaction. They were friendly and courteous. I am happy and impressed.”

C. Zyobel

“A People s Choice is a business that delivers what they promise. I was treated like a VIP by their staff and Sandy was the best. As for their services, they promptly delivered all the official documents and fillings on my behalf and their price is more than reasonable. In short, this is a business that I will always recommend and continue to use. Thank you!”

Juan B.

Simplified vs. Contested Divorce in Mendocino County, CA

There are two main types of divorce in California: simplified (or uncontested) divorce and contested divorce. The type of divorce you go through greatly affects your divorce process. Here’s a look at both of the options.

What Does a Simplified Divorce Process in Mendocino County Entail?

A simplified divorce, or an uncontested divorce process, is where both spouses come to an agreement regarding the main terms of the divorce. For example, if you serve your spouse with divorce papers and they don’t respond/act against your petition, they may simply agree to the terms of the divorce. Therefore, the process can continue without a court-imposed order.

If you and your spouse can cooperate, neither of you will require representation from a divorce attorney. The judge from a family law court simply accepts your divorce petition and sets the lawful premises to dissolve your marital relationship.

Mediation (arbitration of guardianship issues) can help you and your spouse agree on various aspects of your marriage before you come to an agreement for an uncontested divorce. Those aspects include:

  • Visitation rights and custody of minor children
  • Distribution of financial assets, including community property
  • Child support guidelines and spousal support

When Does the Divorce Process in Mendocino County Become Complex?

How to File for Divorce in Mendocino County

Let’s say you serve your spouse with divorce papers. In a complicated divorce process, your spouse (in this case, the participant) responds to your petition for separation. That means that your spouse (respondent) does not agree to the terms of your divorce as laid by you (the petitioner) in the petition form. Your spouse may disagree with your parenting plan, child support process, asset distribution or separate property or community property, or more.

Combative divorce proceedings call for an official divorce proceeding as well as further steps for divorce summons. A family court will carry out a separation hearing before making an appropriate divorce judgment in these cases A knowledgeable divorce attorney may be handy in such a contested case, as they can help you get the best terms for your divorce.

What Are the Steps for Simplified Divorce in Mendocino County?

If you’re lucky enough to have a fairly amenable family history with your spouse, you might be able to skip the lawyer referral service and use a simplified divorce process. Here is how this works in Mendocino County, CA.

When Does the California Divorce Process Start In Mendocino County?

Whether your divorce is simplified or complex, the divorce process begins when you file an application form for divorce. This is a lawful application that establishes the premises for your separation with an official request. Since California is a no-fault separation state, you don’t need to blame your spouse for the divorce; you can simply cite “irreconcilable differences.” If you choose to file for the divorce (filing partner), you’ll need to serve your spouse with copies of documents in the divorce petition, including reasons for ending your marital relationship.

Mendocino County’s default divorce procedure gives your spouse (respondent partner) 30 days to respond/act against your separation appeal via evidence of service form. In their reaction, they may specify their reasons for disputing your separation appeal. If your divorce is simplified, they will not respond with a dispute.

Five Easy Steps for a Simplified Divorce in Mendocino County, CA

For an uncontested divorce:

1. File a petition for divorce with the county clerk. The petition should contain your request for divorce, your marital property, if possible parenting time for your kids, and the division of your community property.

In Mendocino County, you’ll need to file this at the Mendocino County Courthouse, located at 700 S Franklin St # 144, Fort Bragg, CA 95437. You can park for free on the south side of the Justice Center; just be careful to avoid spots marked County “Employee Parking Only.” At the time of writing, the court is open 8:30 a.m. -3:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.

2. Officially serve your spouse the divorce papers as described in the previous section.

3. Exchange details with your spouse about each party’s assets, earnings, and financial debts. A mediator can help you with this step if needed.

4. Develop and sign a marriage negotiation agreement. Your agreement should contain your agreement on divorce negotiation and, if applicable, care for your minor children.

5. Submit a request for default judgment. You can do so at least 31 days after serving your spouse with the divorce papers.

After a minimum of six months as well as the one day you served your spouse, the court can issue a divorce decree nullifying your marriage. The decree specifies the day for the marriage nullification as well as the terms of your arrangement. At that point, both filing parties are officially divorced and can move forward.

What If a Mendocino County Simplified Divorce Isn’t Possible?

A simplified divorce obviously takes fewer resources and time than battling in court. However, not every couple can make this work. Should you and your spouse fail to agree on a marital negotiation agreement and a custodial obligation, you’ll have to address your concerns in court.

The easiest option, should your spouse contest the divorce, is family arbitration. Divorce arbitration through personal arbitration generally seeks to bring you and your spouse to a common ground regarding your separation conflicts. A moderator or family law facilitator can help you address your separation issues, including your parental responsibilities through a detailed guide. This won’t require:

  • Added records and additional forms
  • Declaring costs
  • Attorney charges

Sometimes, a court-recommended moderator can fail to help you come to a common ground. In that case, a well-versed divorce attorney may need to step in.

How Much Is a Divorce in Mendocino County? Factors that Impact Divorce Cost

There isn’t a specified cost for a divorce in Mendocino County; the cost depends on your specific divorce situation. However, we can use the following aspects of divorce to make an estimate of what you may expect to pay.

1. Summary Dissolution

This is by far the easiest way to split up for the average person. To qualify for this type of separation, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Your marriage should be less than 5 years old
  • You should have no children and/or maternity
  • You have limited financial debts and possessions
  • Both of you forgo alimony payments

If you meet these criteria, you don’t need an attorney or have to go to court; You can finish the process online with the help of a service like A People’s Choice.

2.  With or Without Kids

How to File for Divorce in Mendocino County

We can all undeniably agree that a divorce with kids is much more costly than one without kids. Having children makes the process complex and costly, especially if you and your spouse have conflicts regarding child custody or visitation arrangements.

You may need an attorney or arbitrator to help you develop an acceptable childcare plan, which takes more time and money. Additionally, figuring out child custody and child support requires you to complete optional forms.

You can find further information on child support info on the Superior Court of California, County of Mendocino website.

Separating without Divorce in Mendocino County, CA

Mendocino County seat has two distinct ways of revoking your marriage license without a divorce. While not everyone qualifies for these situations, they can be helpful in specific cases.

 a) Annulment

An annulment doesn’t end a marriage; it essentially wipes it out entirely. You can get an annulment on the grounds that:

  • One or both partners were minors when the marriage took place
  • One or both of the spouses were not of sound mind when they married
  • The marital relationship was obtained through coercion
  • One or both partners went into the marriage as a result of scams
  • One or both spouses were literally incapable of marriage when the wedding took place
  • Polygamy or a previous existing marriage
  • Incest

Unlike summary dissolution, an annulment requires a formal statement and a court hearing. It also has a lot of constraints, as you can see above.

b) Legal Separation

Legal separation is prominent in California. The Golden State has one of the most separated but not divorced populations in the country at 9.2%. During a legal separation, you and your spouse stay married on paper, but the court separates your assets and helps with child custody arrangements.

Common reasons couples choose legal separation include financial reasons (i.e. keeping health insurance) and religious reasons (for example, Catholics may not wish to break their religious beliefs by obtaining an actual divorce). Further, some couples with children prefer this type because it won’t affect the children much.

Do You Need Further Help with How to File for Divorce in Mendocino County?

How to File for Divorce in Mendocino County

Having a legal document preparation service to take you through the divorce process in Mendocino Count is a substantial cost-savings solution. It’ll help you minimize the time and money you need to sink into your divorce.

Many couples opt for a simplified divorce and do not seek an attorney referral at all. This alone makes the divorce procedure in Mendocino County much less expensive. In some circumstances, you can wrap up the entire divorce procedure without a single visit to the courthouse. Call A People’s Choice at 800-747-2780 to get started on a simple, hassle-free divorce today.