Family Law Dissolution of Marriage Print this Page
Phone: (415) 444-7040
Location: Civic Center, Hall of Justice, Room 113
Office Hours: 8:00am - 4:00pm

Minimum Time Frame for Termination of Marriage

You may file for a divorce by filing a petition for dissolution of marriage. Filing your petition for dissolution of marriage and serving it on your spouse does not automatically result in a divorce decree! There are several other steps you must take before this can happen. The minimum length of time it takes to obtain a final Judgment of Dissolution is:

  1. Six months and one day from the date the Respondent (your spouse) is served with the Summons and Petition; or
  2. Six months and one day from the date the Respondent (your spouse) files a Response with the Court.

Once the six-month period passes, you may be able to obtain an entry of the judgment, but only if your marital issues (property, family support, etc.) have been resolved and a judicial officer grants the judgment. The judicial officer may leave some marital issues unresolved until a later date, but still grant the judgment.

Be aware that for all types of marital actions, the judgment must be signed by the judicial officer before it is effective. It is not effective on the day you signed an agreement or had a hearing or trial.

If you need easy to follow instructions about how to file for a dissolution of marriage, please go to our Local Forms page under "Local Packet - Divorce" by clicking here.


Family Court is comprised of three distinct program areas:

  • Family Law Division of the Civil Clerk's Office, which processes filings and schedules court hearings for many different types of matters.
  • Family Law Facilitator's Office, which assists parties who have questions about child support, spousal support, health insurance, and the availability of community resources to help families.
  • Family Court Services, which provides child custody recommending counseling and helps parents resolve child-focused disputes once parents are living apart.

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