Going through a divorce can be an isolating experience, as you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse might effectively lose close friends and relatives. You certainly are not alone, though. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, roughly 700,000 American couples call it quits every single year.
While your divorce seems personal, the state has a role in it. After all, to divorce your spouse, you must go through an official dissolution of your marriage. If there are details about your divorce you would like to keep private, you should know that divorce records can be publicly available.
What is in your divorce record?
In addition to the eventual divorce certificate and divorce decree you will receive, your divorce record is likely to include all of the paperwork you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse file with the court. Luckily, you typically can ask the court to seal some or even all of your divorce record.
How does someone access a divorce record?
If a judge does not seal your divorce record, someone might be able to access and read through it. To do so, a person usually must contact the court clerk’s office. There are some online resources that provide instructions for locating and requesting divorce records, but the process is somewhat difficult. There also might be a fee for someone to access your divorce record.
Ultimately, even though it may be theoretically possible for a third party to obtain your divorce record, there are some important safeguards you can use to protect your privacy.