Welcome to FreeDivorce.com.
Christina: This is Christina.
Ed: This is Ed. Today, we are going to talk about the Judgment of Dissolution form, which is FL-180. You use this same form for a divorce judgment, a judgment of legal separation, or for a judgment that nullifies your marriage. The same form works for all three types of judgments.
Christina: At this point in time, we are assuming you have filed for divorce and you and your spouse have exchanged your Preliminary Declaration of Disclosure documents. We are also assuming you have been able to reach an agreement with your spouse on all of the issues, including agreements about dividing your assets and debts, agreements about support, and, if you have minor children by your marriage, agreements about child custody. Finally, we are assuming you have reduced the terms of your settlement agreement to writing using either the Marital Settlement Agreement approach or using the collection of Judicial Council forms approach. Now it’s time to prepare your judgment of dissolution using the judgment form, FL-180.
Christina: Ed, tell us about the FL-180.
Ed: Your judgment of dissolution will consist of a two page court form called “Judgment”, which is FL-180. You will attach to that form either a signed Marital Settlement Agreement or the collection of the Judicial Council court forms discussed in the last video dealing with property division, child custody, child support, and spousal support.
Christina: Is the FL-180 in our Court Forms database?
Ed: Yes. In our database, you will find a blank FL-180 judgment form that you can fill out and print for free. In addition to the blank version of the FL-180, in our database, you will find three separate versions of the completed FL-180 that you can review to understand what a completed form can look like.
Christina: Why are there three completed versions of the FL-180 instead of just one?
Ed: Because, how you fill out the FL-180 depends on the type of judgment you intend to submit to the court. One completed version of the FL-180 assumes you are using the Marital Settlement Agreement approach. One completed version assumes you are using the collection of Judicial Council forms approach to set forth your settlement agreement. The third version assumes there is no settlement agreement and the case is being processed as a true default. All three completed versions of the FL-180 in the database are clearly labeled so you know which version to consider for your case.
Christina: After I pull up a blank FL-180 from the database, what do I do?
Ed: Fill it out by checking various boxes on the form and filling in the appropriate blanks. After you have completed the form, print it. Then attach to the FL-180 either your Marital Settlement Agreement or your collection of the various court forms dealing with property division, spousal support, and, if you have minor children, child custody, and child support.
Christina: If you have minor children so that child support is part of your settlement agreement, don’t forget to attach the FL-192 to your FL-180.
Ed: That’s right. As we mentioned in earlier videos, if your settlement agreement includes any child support provisions, then you are required to attach to your judgment the FL-192 form. It does not matter if you are using the Marital Settlement Agreement approach or the collection of Judicial Council forms approach, if child support is part of the divorce settlement agreement, you must attach the FL-192 form to the judgment. Again, the FL-192 is a very simple form. It is a two-page form. The first page describes the procedures you are to follow for reimbursement of the children’s health care costs. The second page explains that a child support order is part of the judgment and that child support can be modified if significantly changed circumstances occur in the future. The second page also explains how to modify child support. You do not need to fill out anything on the form. Just go to our database. Find the FL-192. Print it and attach it to your FL-180. If you do not have minor children by your marriage, you can skip the FL-192 form.
Christina: If I am using the Judicial Council forms approach to set forth my divorce settlement agreement, is there another form I need to attach to my FL-180?
Ed: There is. The form is called “Stipulation For Entry of Judgment”. If you are using the Marital Settlement Agreement approach for your judgment of dissolution, you do not need to use a “Stipulation For Entry of Judgment” form. However, if you are using the collection of Judicial Council forms approch for your judgment of dissolution, then you will also need a document that is signed by both parties that confirms you both agree to all the provisions set forth in all the Judicial Council forms that are being attached to the judgment. There is no Judicial Council form called “Stipulation For Entry of Judgment”.
Christina: If there is no Judicial Council “Stipulation For Entry of Judgment” form, where do I get the form?
Ed: Some counties have a local form you can use. However, we have created a form you can use and we put it in our Court Forms Database. Go to our database and find the “Stipulation For Entry of Judgment” form. This form is one of just a few “Word” documents contained in the forms database. Our database includes both a blank version of this form and a completed version that you can look at as an example. Fill out this form. Basically, you are filling out the name of your case, the case number, and then checking the different boxes for the various Judicial Council forms you intend to be part of your judgment of dissolution. You will attach this “Stipulation For Entry of Judgment” to your FL-180 judgment of dissolution form. After you fill out this form, print it. Then, you and your spouse need to sign the form. When you and your spouse sign the form, your signatures must be notarized. The court will not accept the form of the judgment if your signatures on this form are not notarized.
Christina: Going back to the judgment form, the FL-180, is that judgment form difficult to fill out?
Ed: Filing out the FL-180 can be confusing. For those that want additional help with the Judgment forms, we offer a “Judgment” video package. You can access the “Judgment” video package by going to our homepage. The “Judgment” video package is set forth along with all the other video guides. The guides are offered at a nominal cost which helps us offset the cost of producing and hosting them. If you elect to purchase the “Judgment” video guide package, you get access to three instructional videos. One video guide shows you how to fill out the FL-180 Judgment form. One shows you how to fill out another form called “Notice of Entry of Judgment”, which is FL-190. The third video shows you how to fill out a form called, “Appearance, Stipulations, And Waivers”, which is FL-130. The video guides will walk you through each court form, line-by-line, providing valuable tips and information on how to fill out each form to your advantage. We provide information about how you can fill out the FL-180 so as to extend health insurance coverage and how to fill out the form to provide income tax advantages. We explain what many of the boxes on the FL-180 mean. We also provide other useful information. Those explanations will be useful when making decisions about what to write down on the forms and which boxes to check. You get all three video guides as part of our “Judgment” package.
Christina: Do I have to buy the “Judgment” video package in order to get access to the FL-180, FL-190, and FL-130 forms?
Ed: No. All of those forms are absolutely free in our court forms database. We make the “Judgment” video package available at a nominal cost to simplify and clarify the process of filling out these three forms.