The Huffington Post has a fun chart showing the “easiest” and “hardest” U.S. States to get a divorce. The HuffPo’s assessment it should be noted, is based solely on the divorce filing fee of a state, and the minimum processing time for a divorce in that state. The ease/difficulty guide does not take into account other laws regarding custody, support, and other substantive issues, and maybe more importantly it does not factor in the typical attorney’s fees expenses for a state. Nevertheless, it illustrates some interesting differences in different states’ approach to divorce.
Per the HuffPo chart, the “easiest” state to file divorce is Alaska, with a filing fee of $150 and a minimum processing time of only 30 days. At the other end of the spectrum is Vermont, with a filing fee of $263 and a minimum processing time of a whopping 450 days. Based on filing fees alone, Florida is the most expensive at $409, and Mississippi the cheapest at $52. The longest minimum processing time for a divorce belongs to Arkansas at 540 days, and the shortest in New Hampshire, at zero days. For those of our viewers watching at home, Hawaii charts in at $175 (sadly, the Hawaii Judiciary raised the price to $205 as of January 1, 2014, which is not reflected in this chart) for the filing fee, and a minimum processing time of 210 days. Note that the 210 days includes the six-months minimum period of residing in the State of Hawaii for jurisdiction, which would leave only 30 days thereafter for actual minimum processing.