How Much Does a Divorce Cost in Missouri?

The process of marriage dissolution can be difficult emotionally and financially. It is often costly, especially if misunderstandings between spouses lead to lengthy court battles. So, how much does a divorce cost in Missouri? The prices can vary from several hundred dollars for simple divorces to $10,000 and more in complicated contested ones, with many divorce issues to decide on. It’s important to calculate the approximate cost of divorce in Missouri to plan your budget and consider all possible expenses.
This article will provide information on the factors affecting the divorce cost in Missouri and the average divorce cost. If you do not want to hire a lawyer because it is expensive but cannot prepare the divorce papers on your own, you can consider our online service. We will provide you with the necessary forms for your uncontested marriage dissolution.

Average Cost of a Divorce in Missouri

The average cost of a divorce in Missouri can be around $13,000. Uncontested divorces may cost you less than $2,000, while contested ones – from $4,000 to $15,000 and more. In general, the cost of divorce in Missouri includes the following expenses:

  • The filing fees. If you wonder, “How much does it cost to file for divorce in Missouri?”, the fee varies depending on the county where you initiate your divorce. You can find the exact prices on the local court website. They are typically $130-$160, on average.
  • Serving a spouse. In an agreed-upon simple divorce, a respondent may voluntarily accept service by signing the respective court form. If this is not the case, you will need to hire a process server or a sheriff to deliver the divorce papers to your spouse. The expenses on such a service usually start at $25.
  • Lawyer’s expenses. If you hire a lawyer, their hourly rates, retainers, and experience level influence the overall divorce cost in Missouri.
  • Negotiations on child custody and support. If parents cannot agree on custody, support, visitation, etc., they will likely need to hire third-party experts who will help decide on contested divorce issues. Their services come at an additional fee, adding to the divorce cost. Also, spouses are usually required to attend parenting classes.

Though many factors affect divorce prices, the main one is the type of divorce – contested or uncontested.

Cost of Uncontested Divorce in Missouri

The average cost of uncontested divorce in Missouri can vary from $500 to $3,000 or more, depending on the complexity of your specific situation and whether you choose to involve an attorney. Besides the moderate costs, the key advantage of this simple divorce is the relatively swift resolution, often taking three to six months on average.

The cost of uncontested divorce in Missouri is usually less than that of a contested one since it is an amicable process that does not require a trial. In this case, both parties agree on critical divorce issues such as division of assets, child custody, child support, and alimony. This agreement eliminates the need for protracted legal battles and reduces overall expenses. A couple can go without a lawyer and cut costs to court fees only.

If the case is uncontested, but spouses still would like to have some legal help, the price will significantly depend on the attorney’s fees and scope of representation. For example, if a lawyer handles the entire divorce process, it will surely cost a couple more than when they hire a legal professional for document preparation only.

If you decide to deal with the divorce on your own to save money on legal assistance but find it challenging to work with legal paperwork, you can order it from our online divorce service at a reasonable price.

Cost of Contested Divorce in Missouri

The cost of a contested divorce process, when spouses cannot agree on the divorce terms, ranges from $4,000 to $29,000 and more. The greater the intensity of disagreements on child-related issues, alimony, division of property, etc., the higher the cost of contested divorce in Missouri. Usually, such cases require involving a lawyer since there are disputes that should be resolved in court.
The Missouri divorce cost can vary significantly due to several factors.

These include, among others:

  • the time it takes for both parties to reach an agreement – the more court hearings are required, the higher the fees for legal representation of lawyers and the involvement of other third-party experts.
  • the hourly rates charged by attorneys – if the case involves lengthy litigation and an attorney has to spend many hours working on the documents, collecting evidence, representing parties in court, etc., overall attorney’s fees can easily exceed $10,000.
  • the complexity of the circumstances – it is common that parties need to hire experts on child-related issues or professionals in property evaluation. Paying for such services can be quite expensive. These specialists may charge fixed prices for specific services, such as calculating child support amounts, or set hourly rates.

Average Fees for a Divorce Lawyer in Missouri

Average fees for a divorce lawyer in Missouri range from $300 to $600 or more per hour. To properly set your budget, you need to know how attorneys calculate a price for their services. Here are a few factors that influence attorney fees:

  • More experienced attorneys, especially those with a strong reputation and a track record of success, often have higher fees than less experienced ones.
  • Attorneys in large cities and affluent areas charge more than those in small towns or rural areas.
  • The complexity of the divorce case. The divorce lawyer’s cost during an uncontested simple divorce is usually less than in a contested one that requires extensive research on the case, thorough preparation of evidence, negotiations, and court litigation.

To determine the cost of divorce in Missouri, you may contact several professionals to check the specifics of their work, whether they have a set price for some services or charge hourly rates, if they require a retainer, etc.

If you are going through an uncontested divorce and just need help filling out the forms, you can use our online divorce service. It will help you reduce divorce costs in Missouri when it comes to paperwork preparation.

Average Filing Fees in Missouri

The average filing fees in Missouri are approximately $130-$200 for a dissolution without children involved. If the parties have minor children, the fees may be higher.

The filing fees can vary based on the specific county where you initiate the process. For example, in Jefferson County, the cost to file for divorce without children is around $130. If there are minor children involved, it will increase to $230,50. To get accurate and up-to-date information on court fees, you may contact the circuit court clerk in the county where you plan to file. They can also provide you with information on possible payment methods.

If you find it challenging to cover this amount, you can apply for a fee waiver. Based on the facts you provide about your financial status, such as income, expenses, debts, etc., the court will decide if you are eligible for a waiver.

Factors That Affect the Cost of Missouri Divorce

Every case is different, but in general, there are several factors that affect the cost of Missouri divorce. Let’s look at each of them below:

  • Contested or uncontested process. If parties cannot agree on one or several divorce issues, the marriage dissolution is contested. In such a case, involving a lawyer is usually necessary, increasing the divorce price.
  • Child-related questions. The more complex the issues involved, the more time and resources your case may take and the more expensive it may be. If there are children in the marriage, it is necessary to make all the decisions in their best interests. For that, spouses should involve custody experts who will help them decide on how to create visitation schedules, who is going to be a custodian parent, what amount of child support each party should pay, etc. Besides, spouses are usually required to attend parenting classes, which should be paid for.
  • Complex financial issues. If there are many assets to divide, the property distribution process can be complicated, especially if parties disagree. You may need to involve forensic accountants to examine financial records. Also, spouses often hire appraisers to evaluate real estate, businesses, or personal property.
  • Divorces in regions with higher court and legal fees are more expensive. If the case goes to trial, the cost of litigation, including court and expert witness fees, can add several thousand dollars or more to the overall divorce cost.

The best option to reduce expenses is to try to agree with your spouse on all divorce matters and make sure your case is uncontested. This way, you can avoid service fees if the other party signs a waiver of service, may go through the process without a lawyer, and can even waive the filing fees if you are eligible.

How We Can Help You

Our online service can help you prepare the necessary paperwork for your uncontested no-fault divorce. You will only need to complete a comprehensive online questionnaire that is divided into several sections covering important aspects of your case. Please note that the questionnaire is absolutely confidential – no third party will be able to get access to your information.

After you submit the questionnaire, our system will start preparing the forms for your divorce. We will ensure that all forms are court-approved and up-to-date. After receiving notification from us, just download your documents from your profile, sign them if required, and file with your local court. As a bonus, we provide all our customers with free filing instructions to simplify the first stages of your divorce process.


We are not attorneys and cannot give legal advice. The information provided on the website or by the support team cannot be considered as legal advice. No attorney-client relationship is created by any use of this site or its contents, or by any communication facilitated by the site. The purpose of our service is providing legal forms for uncontested divorces only. If you believe you need lawyer’s help, it is best to get it.