Filing the Divorce Papers
Make sure you understand the basic divorce concepts before filling out any forms. There is a FREE DIVORCE CLASS where you can learn the basics of divorce law and court procedures. Classes are available to anyone, regardless of income, and regardless of whether you have an attorney. Classes are offered in English and Spanish. Visit Free Classes for more information.
On this page, you can learn how to:
To open a divorce case, you will need to file these four forms:
- Family Court Cover Sheet - REQUIRED
- Complaint for Divorce - REQUIRED
- Summons - REQUIRED
- Joint Preliminary Injunction - OPTIONAL
This form is REQUIRED. This form asks for basic information about you, your spouse, and any children that you and your spouse have together. You are the Plaintiff and your spouse is the Defendant. If you have any other cases at family court that include your spouse and/or your children (for example, child support cases, TPOs, etc.), be sure to fill out the second page with as much information about those cases as you can. The Clerk of Court uses this information to open your case and to make sure all of your cases are assigned to the same judge.
This form is REQUIRED. This form tells the judge and your spouse what you want out of the divorce. You are the Plaintiff and your spouse is the Defendant. You will check boxes and fill in blanks to tell the judge and your spouse things like:
- What kind of child custody / visitation schedule you would like (if there are children)
- How much child support should be ordered (if there are children)
- How you would like to divide the property and debts
- If alimony should be ordered
- If you want to have a former name restored
Be sure to fill out all of the sections. If you leave something blank, the judge will not know what you are asking for, and it may slow down your case.
If you and your spouse have children together, fill out the “Complaint for Divorce – With Children.” If you do not have children together, fill out the Complaint for Divorce – No Children.”
This form is REQUIRED. This form tells your spouse that you have filed for divorce. The form also tells your spouse that he or she must file a response within 20 days, or a default may be entered against them.
You can request this injunction when you file your papers. The injunction prevents both you and your spouse from doing the following while the divorce case is going on:
- You cannot hide, sell, or dispose of community property.
- You cannot cancel or change the beneficiaries on any retirement accounts or insurance plans.
- You cannot harass each other, the children, each other’s relatives, or family pets.
- You cannot relocate the children out of Nevada without written permission.
You will be legally prevented from doing all of the above things as soon as the Joint Preliminary Injunction is issued by the Clerk. Your spouse will be legally prevented from doing these as soon as he or she is served with the papers.
If you would like this injunction issued, you must file a written request asking the Clerk of Court to issue one. Fill out the request below, and the Clerk will issue a detailed injunction when you file.
After you fill out the papers above, you will need to file them with the family court to open up a case. The fee to file these papers is $299. The fee is payable by cash, money order, or most major credit/debit cards. If you cannot afford the fee, please see Filing Fees and Waivers to find out how to ask the court to waive the fee.
The Summons is not filed right away – instead the Clerk “issues” a Summons by stamping and dating it. You will receive the original back, and you must make a copy to serve on the Defendant. After Defendant is served, you must have the original Summons filed along with your proof that Defendant was served.
You can file your papers one of three ways:
In Person: Bring your filing fee and the forms to the Family Courts and Services Center. You will be able to file your papers in person at the Clerk’s Office. The Clerk’s Office is open Monday – Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m, but you must arrive by 3:40 p.m. to see a Clerk before closing. Be sure to arrive before then.
By Mail: If you cannot come to the court during business hours, you can mail your forms and the filing fee to:
Family Courts and Services Center
Attn: Clerk of Court
601 North Pecos Road
Las Vegas, NV 89101
- Online: Many documents can be filed online through the court's e-filing system, eFileNV (although some documents must be filed in person). There is a fee of $3.50 to upload your documents, in addition to the regular filing fee. You must register for an account, you must provide a valid email address, and you must be able to scan and upload your documents.
If you efile your documents, you will be agreeing to be served with future legal documents electronically. Be sure to use an email address that you will check regularly so that you do not miss important legal documents filed in your case. If your email addresses changes, you must update that information in your efile account. If you would rather receive future legal documents through the U.S. Mail, file your documents in person or by mail.
Next Step: Serve the Defendant
After you complete the steps on this page, a copy of the summons and complaint (and anything else you filed) must be hand-delivered to your spouse (the “Defendant”). The Court does not serve the papers for you. It is up to YOU to make sure your spouse gets served after you file for divorce. After you have completed the steps on this page, learn all about how to have your spouse served by visiting the Serving the Divorce Papers page.
The Court does not serve the papers for you. If you do not make sure the Defendant is properly served, your case could be dismissed.