What are the steps I need to take after my spouse has been served with divorce papers? 26 Answers as of July 02, 2013

What are the steps I need to take after my spouse has been served with divorce papers?

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Reeves Law Firm, P.C.
Reeves Law Firm, P.C. | Roy L. Reeves
What do you mean? Are you doing a do-it-yourself divorce?
Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 6/20/2013
Law Office of Cassandra Savoy
Law Office of Cassandra Savoy | Cassandra Savoy
File a case information statement.
Answer Applies to: New Jersey
Replied: 1/4/2012
H. Scott Basham, Attorney at Law, P.C. | H. Scott Basham
You might want to ask for a temporary hearing, especially if you need to ask for temporary use of the marital residence, temporary alimony, and/or temporary child support. Asking for one or more of these things does not mean you have to ask for them on a permanent basis.
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 1/4/2012
Glenn E. Tanner
Glenn E. Tanner | Glenn E. Tanner
It depends what you need. You can move for default if your spouse doesn't respond to the petition.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 1/4/2012
Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser
Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser | Donald F. Conviser
If you can afford it, the best step would be to retain an experienced Family Law Attorney to represent you. If not, you can go to your Superior Court's self-help center to seek the assistance of volunteers there. Your wife has 30 days to respond to the documents served on her. If she fails to timely file and serve her Response, you will need to seek to have the Court enter her default. You also will need to prepare your Preliminary Declaration of Disclosure and have it served on your wife, in any event. There are many other things that need to be done in a divorce, but they are too voluminous to put into a response to this question.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 1/4/2012
    Peyton and Associates | Barbara Peyton
    If your spouse has filed a response to the divorce papers, file a Memo to Set the Case for Trial. The court will then set a mandatory settlement conference and a trial date. If your spouse has not responded within 30 days of being served with divorce papers, file a Request for Entry of Default and request an uncontested hearing to get your divorce.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/4/2012
    Ezim Law Firm | Dean Esposito
    Need more information to properly answer this question. It depends on whether the petition for divorce requests a divorce under article 102 or 103 - whether the parties have lived separate and apart continuously without reconciliation for the requisite the period PRIOR to filing suit.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 1/4/2012
    Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock
    Law Offices of Arlene D. Kock | Arlene D. Kock
    Your spouse has 30 days in which to answer the divorce. If there is no answer, you can proceed with a default.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/4/2012
    Elizabeth Jones, A Professional Corporation
    Elizabeth Jones, A Professional Corporation | Elizabeth Jones
    You provide very little information. If it is you who filed and served him you need to prepare the income and Expense Declaration and the Schedule of Assets and debts with supporting documents and exchange financial information with him.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/4/2012
    Diefer Law Group, P.C.
    Diefer Law Group, P.C. | Abel Fernandez
    You need to move the case to a trial. If you need temporary orders, file a request to have temporary orders made for custody or support. If you do not need temporary orders, file a request to set the matter for trial.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    Michael Apicella
    Michael Apicella | Apicella Law and Mediation
    Generically speaking, the next step is to file with the court a form called Proof of Service of Summons (form FL-115). The next step after that is to fill out your preliminary disclosure forms (forms FL-142 and FL-150), and "serve" them on your spouse. You can go online and look up California Family Code section 2104 to learn about the preliminary disclosure requirements. After both parties have served their preliminary disclosures, you should sit down with your spouse and discuss settlement terms on all outstanding issues that may exist in your case, such as asset/debt division, spousal support, child support, custody, etc. Best to hire a local family law lawyer to help you learn your rights and develop a divorce plan of action.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    David A. Browde, P.C.
    David A. Browde, P.C. | David Browde
    That depends upon the response of the spouse.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/2/2013
    Wolfstone, Panchot & Bloch, P.S., Inc.
    Wolfstone, Panchot & Bloch, P.S., Inc. | Mark Brown
    Under Washington state law, your spouse has 20 days to file a written "Response" to your Petition (60 days if s/he lives outside the state). If s/her does not respond, or if all issues are agreed to in writing, you can finalize your dissolution by having the court sign a Decree of Dissolution after 90 days have expired. Most Superior Courts in Washington state have a "family court facilitator" at the courthouse to answer your nuts and bolts questions.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    Correia-Champa & Mailhot
    Correia-Champa & Mailhot | Susan Correia Champa
    The next step in the process is to engage in discovery. Discovery is when both parties in the divorce disclose to one another their respective financial positions. In addition, if you have children, you may want to file motions for temporary orders, seeking child support, possibly alimony, health insurance and various other issues that may need to be addressed on a temporary basis prior to your final divorce hearing. Sometimes, it is helpful to try and settle the matter if you can agree how to divide assets, liabilities and child related issues, otherwise, the case after discovery proceeds to a pre-trial hearing (that is when you give the Judge a summary of what you believe is a fair and reasonable division of the marital assets, liabilities and custody issues), if it can't be settled at that point then the case will proceed to trial. Without knowing more information, that is a very brief synopsis of how a divorce case proceeds. I suggest you contact an attorney to discuss your case in more detail in order to protect your interests in your divorce case.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    The Law Offices of Jill Puertas LLC | Jill Puertas
    Wait for his answer to the petition or notification by the court of a settlement conference date. Your attorney may file additional documents I'm the interim.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    The Law Offices of Robert W. Bellamy
    The Law Offices of Robert W. Bellamy | Robert W. Bellamy
    Your attorney should have advised you of the steps involved. Your husband should meet with or sign and return them to your attorney. if the divorce is uncontested, your attorney will file the papers with the court. If it is contested then your husband or his lawyer will file his papers and you or your lawyer will file yours. The court will consider the papers and make the proper ruling,either a divorce or schedule a trial to hear both sides and then make its ruling. All told it will require time. Be patient.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    Law Office of Angela M. Riccio | Angela M. Riccio
    Your spouse will have 30 days from the date of service in which to file an answer or other pleading in response to your Petition for Dissolution of Marriage and to file an Appearance either on his or her own behalf or through an attorney. Depending on whether or not they do so you will need to follow both statutory and local rules relative to the relief you are seeking in your Petition and based your spouses response or non-response.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    Attorney & Counselor at Law
    Attorney & Counselor at Law | John Hugger
    Normally, the Court in Jefferson County, Colorado, will issues a Case Management Order which will need to be followed. Typically a Status Conference will be held before you are allowed to set the matter for either a Temporary Orders Hearing and/or a Permanent Orders Hearing. Consult with an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    Ashman Law Office
    Ashman Law Office | Glen Edward Ashman
    You've already made one enormous mistake in serving someone papers without a lawyer, especially when you had no idea what to do next. Before making more missteps (and serving papers is often an expensive misstep), get a lawyer. Do so ASAP to redo what you served and to do the appropriate followup which may include mandatory ADR/mediation, proposed agreements, parenting plans, agreements, stipulation to trial, discovery and motions.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    Law Office of William C. Wood, LLC | William C. Wood
    If your spouse resides in Maryland, he/she has 30 days in which to file a written response. If and when a response is filed, the court will set a date for a scheduling conference where you will both go to court for the first time to establish the issues in the case and to set future dates. If no timely response is filed, you would then need to file a request for default judgment to get the case scheduled.
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    Law Office of Lenore Tsakanikas, PLLC
    Law Office of Lenore Tsakanikas, PLLC | Lenore Tsakanikas
    In Arizona, she has 20 days from the date of service to file a response or 30 days if she was served out of state. If she does not file within the time frame, you can file a default.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    Edwin Fahlen Attorney at Law
    Edwin Fahlen Attorney at Law | Edwin Fahlen
    California requires both of you to exchange a Declaration of Disclosure. Then you need to determine what is community property and what is separate property. Then support must be analyzed to determine rights and obligations. If there are any questions about a spouse hiding assets, then comprehensive discovery should take place with document productions, interrogatories, depositions and subpoenas. Once you have determined what there is, then a division plan be developed. If no agreement can be reached, then an application for a trial date will have to be made, and you will then each place your admissible evidence before the court to make a ruling.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    Beaulier Law Office
    Beaulier Law Office | Maury Beaulier
    The first most important step is to draft, serve and file an Answer and Counter Petition to her papers within thirty (30) days. If you do not do so and do so properly, you may face a default proceeding where her Petition is viewed as if uncontested. The second step his to consult with and hire legal counsel. Ideally, this should precede step one.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    The Law Offices of Mandy J. McKellar
    The Law Offices of Mandy J. McKellar | Mandy J. McKellar
    In Nevada you should file a Financial Disclosure form and then wait the 20 days after service of the complaint for the answer. If there is no answer in 20 days then pursue default.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 1/3/2012
    Donaldson Stewart, PC
    Donaldson Stewart, PC | Monica H. Donaldson Stewart
    Once served, your spouse has 20 days (30 if served out of state) to file a written Response. During that time, there's nothing you need to do (although you may want to consult with an attorney to determine whether "temporary orders" are appropriate in your situation). If a Response is not filed within the appropriate timeframe, you may be able to file an application for default and move forward with the divorce without the other party's participation. If a Response is filed, the other party will be permitted to participate, and it is likely that one or more hearings/conference will be scheduled to address settlement (or litigation) for your case.
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 1/3/2012
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