[adsenseyu4]I think of the internet as “the place to complete a task from beginning to end without having to leave my comfy leather swivel chair.”
I can shop for clothes, order groceries, take care of business transactions, and most anything else in between.
However, there is one thing I would not use the internet to do – and that is to get an online divorce.
Why do I feel this way?
Simply because there is no such thing as an online divorce – no matter what any internet-based law organization will tell you.
I know that this realization may hit hard for some, especially for those couples who thought they could easily end their marriages without ever setting foot outside the walls of their homes.
But the truth is, divorcing using nothing but a computer is just not a possibility.
So then what about all of those companies that shamefully tout getting a divorce online as one of their offered legal services?
They are all 100% guilty of false advertising.
What These Legal Companies Are Really Offering You – As It Is NOT An Online Divorce!
Unfortunately, having a set of customized divorce forms in your hand does not mean that you marriage is now considered “over” – although the online legal companies out there will easily have you believe that this is the case.
As it is, you still have to file for divorce with the court; make sure that both the husband and the wife have copies of all the divorce papers; and then wait six months for the judge to sign off on your case before you are declared officially single again.
Interestingly, lately many of the family law courts across the country have actually not been accepting divorce documents that come from an online legal source, pointing out the numerous errors these organizations make when preparing the required paperwork.
Thus, the court suggest the following to those filing for divorce: use the internet to download and print blank copies of your state’s divorce forms.
Then, make an appointment with your nearest legal aid center to have someone there review your documents with you. That person will go over your case with a fine tooth comb – so you can rest assured that your paperwork is mistake-free.
What Would Happen If You Actually Could Get An Online Divorce?
If online divorces were really possible then several things would easily fall into place for many people.
For example, there wouldn’t be any more bitter complaints about the courthouse’s overly high parking fees.
After all, if you could file for divorce online then you wouldn’t have to pay to park your car since you’d be sitting parked at your computer chair – which is a cost-free thing to do the last time I checked.
The existence of a strictly online divorce would also mean that E-mail could be used when the spouses exchanged court forms with one another. But this document swap must be done in person, creating reason number two why there is no such thing as getting a divorce online.
The legal professional who would especially appreciate it if there was an online divorce ability is none other than the family law judge.
Think about it: court hearings could be held on the web as the judge was at home wearing his silk pajamas and slippers, drinking a freshly brewed cup of his favorite morning coffee.
He would also be able to meet with divorce attorneys in the same way, saving everyone a trip to the courthouse facility.
But, the online divorce is not a reality so this is only wishful thinking!
Going Dry From Repeatedly Explaining The Online Divorce Lie
I hate false advertising with a passion, especially when it negatively effects the customers who believe in the corporation’s (fake) message.
I used to work in the Divorce section for a well-known online company that sold customized legal forms.
And of course a big part of that company’s advertising slogan for the service was “get your online divorce today!”
Unfortunately, many customers fell for it and thought that it really was possible to go from married to divorced by paying a fee when they signed up with us.
And when they found out that this was not the case…let us just say I almost got my eardrums blown out on more than one occasion!
What these clients realized too late was that they were only paying for the work that went into creating their personalized documents, and nothing more.
Throughout the working week I found myself constantly explaining that there really is no such thing as an online divorce, and I apologized until my throat was dry that our business practices were so misleading.
As though it wasn’t already enough that they were dealing with failing marriages, our customers now had to add to that the worry of figuring out how to come up with additional cash for court fees.
I could easily sympathize with their frustration. After all, a divorce is said to have the same impact as the death of a loved one – and the last thing anyone wants during such an emotional time is to deal with a company that promises, rather guarantees, to make their lives a bit easier.
It was because of the double standard of it all that I decided to find a new job. Well, that and the fact that this company didn’t know how to prepare divorce documents correctly if their lives depended on it…but that is another story!
If you want to see the blatant deception for yourself, here is a little experiment to try when you have an extra minute.
Use your favorite internet browser to conduct a search on Google.com, typing the phrase “online divorce” into the search box.
Once you have done that, watch how many businesses come up in the results page who market the service without thinking twice.
False advertising at its best!
Which company’s false advertising annoys you the most?