For an ncontested divorce, what happens if I do not file a pettition response? 58 Answers as of September 09, 2012

My wife and I have agreed to file an uncontested divorce, since we have already agreed on everything, split up assets (house has been listed for sale) personal assets to be split and debts are split accordingly, retirement accounts are what is in her retirement account she will keep and what is in my retirement account I will keep, custody and child support have already been agreed upon. That being said, what happens if I don't file a response petition? Will a Judge change what we have agreed upon? If so, what changes can the Judge make? Will I lose any rights if there is a problem in the future? We have both agreed to stay in the house until it has sold, since neither one of us can afford it on our own.

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Blough Law Office | Janis L. Blough
You really should have an experienced attorney draft a Judgment covering all your agreements, and both of you should sign it. If you fail to respond and have no agreed judgment, a default judgment could be entered against you and all of your agreements could fall by the wayside. Your best off with legal advice and a comprehensive Judgment to protect both of you. It's not so much the judge you have to fear but your soon to be ex-spouse. Good luck!
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 9/9/2012
Austin Hirschhorn, P.C.
Austin Hirschhorn, P.C. | Austin Hirschhorn
The court could adopt your agreement and enter a judgment of divorce incorporating all of the things you have agreed upon.

One area that could be a problem might be child support because support guidelines have been adopted in Michigan.

The guidelines are based upon the concept that both parents are responsible for support of children of the marriage and because the court has the continuing duty to consider the support for the children until they reach the age of majority if your agreement is not close to what the support guidelines provide the court could refuse to accept what you have agreed upon.

I would recommend that the party who is going to file retain an attorney to make sure that the complaint that is filed complies with the applicable court rules.

That attorney could also prepare all the papers that need to be filed to complete the case.

If there are minor children, the statutes require that 6 months must go by before a judgment can be entered.

If there are no minor children, a divorce could be granted after 60 days go by.

I would also recommend that the non-filing party hire an attorney to review the proposed divorce judgment to make sure that it contains everything required by the statutes and court rules. Good luck.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 8/27/2012
Law Office of Charles M. Vacca Jr. | Charles Martin Vacca Jr.
You will be defaulted, and the Court will not act on any particular requests you may have (even if your spouse agrees to them, unless you both submit same in writing to the Court). For further information, please contact me.
Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
Replied: 8/10/2012
Reeves Law Firm, P.C.
Reeves Law Firm, P.C. | Roy L. Reeves
The Judge will issue an order based on the evidence that is presented to him/her. If you do not file a response, the Judge will assume you do not care and whatever your spouse asks for is what he will give. File a response stating you have signed a Final Decree and ask the Court to only grant the divorce if the Final Decree with your signature is presented.
Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 8/10/2012
John Russo | John Russo
The short answer is you will be defaulted if you do not file an answer, and counter claim. You can still put the divorce through but you guys will be left with more questions then answers. The short answer to being defaulted is you accept the decision and will never be allowed to appeal along with other things. The Court can change things that you agree too as it relates to the children if the Court feels it is not in their best interest, and since I don't know what you agreed too I will leave it at that. Also, sounds like you won't have a PSA which is not a good idea when there are assets. Why don't you hire an attorney (divorce) he/she can work with you both, but in the end only represent one, but at least things will be done right and you can split the cost and if your claim is true and you have agreed on everything the cost should be manageable. I for one are seeing more,and more of this pro se stuff in the family court and people in my humble opinion are playing with a time bomb too, too, many open ends.
Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
Replied: 8/10/2012
    Snake River Law PLLC
    Snake River Law PLLC | Mark Petersen
    If you do nothing, upon application by your spouse, the Court will enter a default judgment order against you. This converts the complaint into a judgment. The judge will not change anything but will enter an order that reflects what is requested in your spouse's complaint. The division of property and debt in the default judgment will be final. You cannot reopen a divorce proceeding to address any issues with the division of property and debt.
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Law Office of Melvin Franke | Melvin Franke
    I would suggest that you hire an attorney to file a petition.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Victor Varga | Victor Varga
    If you don't respond, then it will delay your case. Your wife will have to file for default, establish that you are not in the military, wait 30 days from the date of filing for your response, then proceed. Best thing for you to do is to file an Answer admitting everything, and requesting that the court grant the requested relief.
    Answer Applies to: Maryland
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Leonard A. Kaanta, P.C. | Leonard A. Kaanta
    You could be defaulted, you need to file an answer.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Alvin Lundgren | Alvin Lundgren
    The judge will follow the terms in the petition.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Gorman Law Group, P.C. | Troy T. Gorman
    If you do not file a response to the complaint for divorce, a default will be entered against you by the court. The judge could, with or without the prompting of your wife, change what you have agreed to do with your wife. A default and any changes that are made as part of the default could negatively impact your rights and obligations after the divorce, including your ability to ask for any modifications later. With that said, if you and your wife have agreed on everything (and it sounds like you have), then I would suggest you consult an attorney to make sure that what you have agreed to actually gets entered in an order as agreed.? An attorney in my office, Cassandra A. Zaas, Esq. specializes in family law and divorce cases and, although no often done, will sometimes sit down with a husband and wife and go over what they have agreed to and reduce the agreement to a "consent judgement" that can be entered with the Court. This is a good way to save money, and yet make sure that what you both want actually gets done. The fee for this would be a flat rate of $500.00, for which she would draft and file the response to the complaint on your behalf, have a conference with you and your wife, draft the Consent Judgement, and if necessary appear in court to assist you and the court with any questions. If this interests you and your wife, please feel free to contact my office.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Bruning & Associates, PC | Mary D. Sump
    This is a great question. There is a risk that a judge would find you in default and allow your wife to proceed on her own, but if you are clearly actively participating in the litigation, this is unlikely. To avoid a default finding, you must file your Appearance (a written form found at the Clerk's office) and typically pay a filing fee along with it. If the Judge requires that you file a Response, go ahead and do so. I would recommend filing your Appearance ASAP and finalizing any marital settlement agreement and joint parenting agreement soon as well. If you do not have the agreements prepared, you need to see a licensed attorney to ensure that all necessary language is included, as required by Illinois statute.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Joanna Mitchell & Associates, P.A.
    Joanna Mitchell & Associates, P.A. | Joanna Mitchell
    Unless you have an agreement, in writing, that has been filed with the Court, then I would not be so sure that everything has been agreed. If you do not file a response, a default will be entered against you and you can lose serious rights forever, especially those surrounding your rights to spend time with your minor child. If you do not respond, you could be in serious trouble. And yes, a Judge can modify your agreement, especially on the issue of child support. You need to respond and you need to consult with and retain an attorney. Detailed answers to many frequently asked questions regarding divorce, custody, visitation, child support, alimony, paternity and other Family Law matters are located on my website. Be sure to stop by and check it out! And of course, if you have a question that is not addressed, please feel free to email me directly. Additionally, if your existing or potential case is in or near the Central Florida area (Orange, Osceola, Lake, Sumter, Marion, and nearby counties), I would be more than happy to speak with you personally regarding your potential Family Law matter. My office offers free initial telephone consultations, during which we can discuss your matter in more detail, as well as explore the potential rights and options available to you. If you would like to coordinate a free initial telephone consultation, please contact my office.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Steven Harrell, Attorney at Law | Waymon Steven Harrell
    You need to at least sit down with a divorce lawyer, and get your agreement with your spouse reduced to writing. A parenting plan must also be submitted if you have any children, and child support worksheets must be prepared.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    The Law Office of Eric J Smith
    The Law Office of Eric J Smith | Eric Smith
    If you have been served the papers or filed a waiver of service, the final decree can be proved up by your spouse and will be presumed to be in the best interest of both parties. I would suggest contacting your HR departments / retirement account administrator to make sure the order will be sufficient and no Qualified Domestic Relations Order (QuaDRO) is needed.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    THE LOCKHART LAW FIRM | CLAYTON LOCKHART
    This appears to be a "no fault" divorce rather than an "uncontested" divorce.? There is a difference in the two.? Generally speaking, judges would rather have the parties come to agreements on everything, rather than the judge have to make a decision on any issues.? It appears as though the two of you have worked out all of your issues and I would be quite surprised if the judge made any changes to your agreement.? My guess is that the judge is probably going to sign an agreed order granting the divorce and making the agreements that the parties have already reached be a part of the order.
    Answer Applies to: Mississippi
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Glenn E. Tanner
    Glenn E. Tanner | Glenn E. Tanner
    It depends whether you signed a joinder in the petition, what the joinder says, what the petition says and what she does. Without knowing these things its impossible to answer your question. To be safe, file a response. You can always sign documents to finish your divorce to reflect your agreement. However, without a response, you don't know what she will enter without your signature.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Reza Athari & Associates, PLLC | Seth L. Reszko
    Generally, an uncontested divorce involved a joint petition and a proposed decree of divorce without a responsive petition. Once the joint petition is filed with the proposed decree, the Judge will sign it (provided no errors) and you will be held to the language set forth in the decree. If your spouse filed a complaint, you have a right to answer. If you don't answer, your spouse can go forward on a default based upon the terms that she set forth in the complaint. If you are satisfied with those terms, you will be held to comply with them in the future as those terms will be set forth in the divorce decree.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Slotnick & Schwartz
    Slotnick & Schwartz | Leonard T. Schwartz
    You need to see an attorney to prepare a Property Settlement Agreement which spells out all of your agreements. You both sign it and it is introduced as part of the divorce Judgment. If you do not do that and your wife changes her mind in Court the Judge can do whatever he wants.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Law Office of Gregory Crain | Gregory Crain
    You could lose all your rights.
    Answer Applies to: Arkansas
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    DEAN T. JENNINGS, P.C.
    DEAN T. JENNINGS, P.C. | Dean T Jennings
    Put the total agreement in writing signed by both of you and file it in the court case under the Dissolution, if there is already a case on file. If not file a Petition and get a case started and then file the Agreement in it - or else you have nothing. Talking about it doesn't matter it has to be in writing to be enforceable.
    Answer Applies to: Iowa
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Law Office of Cassandra Savoy
    Law Office of Cassandra Savoy | Cassandra Savoy
    The courts want couples to work it out. The judge usually does not read property settlement agreements. Usually, the parties are asked if they think the agreement is fair and if they are willing to live with it. Other than that, the court is happy if you are happy.
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Dennis P. Mikko Attorney at Law | Dennis P. Mikko
    If you do not file an answer to the complaint for divorce, your spouse could enter a default against you. Once a default is entered, if she changes her mind there is nothing to prevent her from doing so. It is in your best interest to file an answer and then prepare a consent judgment of divorce setting forth the agreement you have reached. As for issues of child custody, child support and parenting time, a court can modify your agreement if they find it not in the best interests of the children. Generally, however, if the parents have made a reasonable agreement the court will adopt it.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Donaldson Stewart, PC
    Donaldson Stewart, PC | Monica H. Donaldson Stewart
    Two things: 1) Generally, a judge will accept any terms that the parties believe are fair. 2) There are two ways a case can proceed if you don't file a Response: a) Default - this means that your wife would complete the divorce without your involvement, including attending a brief hearing in several weeks to have the judge enter the divorce based on the terms listed in the Petition; or b) Consent - this means that you and your wife both sign final divorce papers and submit them to the judge to sign and finalize the case (no hearing). Having a case go by default could affect your rights going forward; if you have reached full agreements, I would recommend submitting a Consent Decree (you can do this even if you haven't filed a Response, but you will still have to pay the filing fee for the Response)
    Answer Applies to: Arizona
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Castro, Rivera & Associates | Sandra Rivera
    If you've agreed to everything then memorialize it in a marital settlement agreement and submit with your petition. There's no need to file a response since you will have signed the agreement. There should be no reason for the judge to change anything unless the child support amount doesn't reflect what the guidelines mandate.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Grace Law Offices of John F Geraghty Jr.
    Grace Law Offices of John F Geraghty Jr. | John F. Geraghty, Jr.
    There is no need to file an Answer You should have signed a Acknowledgement of Service with agreement to Final Judgment after 33 days.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Law Offices of Tobie B. Waxman
    Law Offices of Tobie B. Waxman | Tobie B. Waxman
    If you don't respond to the petition, the filing spouse and request entry of default. You can get a default judgment WITH a written agreement. You should consult with an attorney to make sure you file all the proper documents otherwise your judgment paperwork can be rejected.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    R. Jason de Groot, P.A
    R. Jason de Groot, P.A | R. Jason de Groot
    In order for your divorce to be uncontested, there must be a petition, an agreement, and an answer to the petition. If you do not file the answer to the petition, it will be a contested divorce. So, by not filing what you can a response petition petition, you will defeat the purpose of being able to file an uncontested proceeding.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    The Law Offices of Robert W. Bellamy
    The Law Offices of Robert W. Bellamy | Robert W. Bellamy

    She needs your signature or she could change and file with cause and cause you grief.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    T.K. Byrne | Timothy K. Byrne
    You're bound by your filed and signed property settlement agreement. You signed it. It can be changed or withdrawn prior to divorce.
    Answer Applies to: Mississippi
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Harkess Law Offices | Nancy Harkess
    If you are both in complete agreement, you would file a joint petition for which no answer is required as you are filing together. If she has already filed a Complaint for Divorce and you don't answer, she may obtain a Default and will likely get the terms she asked for in the Complaint.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Attorney At Law | Harry D. Roth
    No, nothing bad will happen if you do not respond, so long as your wife does what she said she would do and does not take advantage of your failure to file a response and messes with you. My personal view is that filing a response and keeping the court advised of address changes at least until the children are grown is a better way to handle it than to "save money" by not filing anything. However, you will lose nothing so long as she follows the agreement and you will not lose the right to return to court later to resolve disagreements which may arise.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Darrell B. Reynolds, P.C. | Darrell B. Reynolds
    You do not have to file a response. However, you will not receive notice of any court date. In addition the only matter that may change from the agreement is the child support amount. I suggest you take the agreement to an attorney for review and a determination for the correct amount of child support.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Law Office of L. Paul Zahn
    Law Office of L. Paul Zahn | Paul Zahn
    So long as you have a Marital Settlement Agreement which is attached to the Judgment (and incorporated by reference) the Judge will not change anything. If you are in my and you need assistance with this process, please contact me for a free consultation.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Ezim Law Firm | Dean Esposito
    If you have reached an agreement, it should be reduced to writing in the form of a Judgment and filed with the court. If this is done, then you do not need to file a response.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Christensen Corbett & Pankratz
    Christensen Corbett & Pankratz | Craig L. Pankratz
    A judge can order anything that deviates from the petition if you do not file an answer to it.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Steven Alpers | Steven Alpers
    Your wife should present your written agreement to the court. If you do not have a written agreement, then you are at risk. She could go in and ask for more than you agreed upon. Since this would be a default hearing you would not have a right to be heard. You would have to make a request to set aside the judgment due to excusable neglect. Whether that would happen I cannot predict. The best course would be to file an answer.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Law Offices of John C. Bigler | John Bigler
    If the you do not file a response, the court can enter a default against you.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Salladay Law Office | Lance Salladay
    Generally a judge will follow the agreement of the parties- and if you have a signed Property Settlement, Child Custody and Support Agreement that will be filed with the court as part of the final divorce there should not be any problem. The court could change child support so that it conforms with the Idaho Child Support Guidelines- if it does not already comply- just make sure what you have agreed on is in writing, you have signed the agreement and she has signed the agreement and the agreement gets filed with the court.
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    You need representation. You need to appear, and you need to have the agreements which were made reduced into judgment form and reviewed by an attorney representing you. If you do nothing you are at risk. Its only the rest of your life and your relationship and rights regarding your children which is at risk. It is impossible to answer your questions more definitively on the facts presented, please call my office with additional details and for an appointment.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    The Law Office of Meredith Woods Markham, LLC
    The Law Office of Meredith Woods Markham, LLC | Meredith Woods Markham
    There are specific documents required by the court when you file. One of those documents is your answer and waiver. That will cover your legal duty to file an answer.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law
    John E. Kirchner, Attorney at Law | John Kirchner
    Assuming you are proceeding in Colorado, you are somewhat misunderstanding the concept of "uncontested". There is only one kind of case to obtain a dissolution of marriage and whether it is "contested" or "uncontested" is simply a description of how the case ends - not how it starts. Uncontested means that the parties have reached a complete agreement and do not require any decisions by a judge. "Contested" means that, after good faith efforts, the parties cannot agree on everything and will require a judge to hear arguments and make a decision. Except for agreements related to children, a separation agreement is binding on the judge unless he concludes that it is unfair. If the judge believes it is unfair, he can refuse to approve it but he cannot make changes without conducting an "contested" hearing if the parties cannot reach an agreement on changes that will make it fair. It is rare for a judge to find a separation agreement unfair in Colorado. As to children, the judge is not bound by the parents' agreement and must decide for himself if it is best for the child. Unless the agreement calls for something truly unusual, it is also rare for a judge to disapprove a parenting plan agreement. Unless both parties have a lawyer, when there are children involved the Court must conduct an "uncontested" hearing to confirm that the parents do, in fact, have an agreement that is in the best interests of the child. If there is a written agreement, there is no absolute requirement to file a Response to the Petition - especially if the written agreement is filed with the initial Petition. Usually, however, the written agreement may not be completed at the beginning of the case. The risk you face by not filing a Response is that if either no written agreement is ever prepared and filed with the Court, the other party could tell the Court that you are just ignoring things and ask for the Court to find you in default. If you don't file a Response and are found in default, there is no requirement for the other party to send you notices of court hearings or other actions in the case. Therefore, the simple answer to what happens if you don't file a Response is that it may depend on whether you can trust the other party who filed the case to do what is right.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    James T. Weiner & Associates, P.C.
    James T. Weiner & Associates, P.C. | James T. Weiner
    Generally if you file a written stipulated divorce agreement the judge will follow it, but to make sure I would hire a separate attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Beaulier Law Office
    Beaulier Law Office | Maury Beaulier
    If you fail to file a response to the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, the petitioning party may seek a divorce by default where the court would make its divorce order without any input from you. Often the petitioning party receives whatever it is they request.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Wolfstone, Panchot & Bloch, P.S., Inc.
    Wolfstone, Panchot & Bloch, P.S., Inc. | Mark Brown
    Make absolutely certain that each and every element of your agreement is accurately reflected in the final written pleadings - the (1) Findings of Fact/Conclusions of Law, (2) the Decree of Dissolution of Marriage, (3) the Order of Child Support, (4) the Child Support Worksheets and (5) the Parenting Plan. Then both of you sign each of these pleadings, and make copies. Then make absolutely certain that those same signed pleadings (1) to (5) are presented to the judge at the appropriate time and have been signed by the judge. That is the only way to assure (a) no changes have been made to the agreements (b) the judge does want to make changes and (c) you are actually divorced. (There are thousands of examples of one spouse simply relying on the other spouse to finalize the divorce on the terms they "think" they agreed to - only to discover years later that their spouse had changed the documents before presenting them to the judge, or failed to even finalize the divorce.)
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Dunnings Law Firm
    Dunnings Law Firm | Steven Dunnings
    Hire an attorney or else she might take advantage of you.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    C. Michael Kelly, P.A.
    C. Michael Kelly, P.A. | Michael Kelly
    Do yourself a favor. File a response stating that you and she have agreed on everything. Doing nothing invites problems.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 8/13/2012
    Robert J. Merlin, P.A.
    Robert J. Merlin, P.A. | Robert J. Merlin
    You are at risk of your wife asking for something else, which she could get. Everything is on the table if the judge does not ratify your agreement. Assuming that your wife asked the judge to ratify the agreement in her petition, just send the court, with a copy to her attorney, a paper admitting everything. If she did not ask the judge to ratify the agreement, you need to file an answer asking the judge to do that. Make sure that your agreement is in writing.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Theodora Fader | Theodora Fader
    If you do not file an answer to the complaint, your default may be entered, which could have consequences, depending upon how your case progresses.? It is highly likely that the judge will sign a judgment that is presented if you and your spouse have agreed upon and signed?it, whether you have filed an answer or not.? That being said, it is best to have the assistance of an attorney to prepare the judgment in order to make sure that it will have the effect that you want it to have.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Mediation Services of Southwest Florida
    Mediation Services of Southwest Florida | Dennis J. Leffert, J.D.
    Great Question! You mentioned Custody and Child Support. There are certain financial (child support) and other requirements regarding the children that must be met when it comes couples with minor children. I suggest you consider Mediation. With what you have said, and assuming you both are in total agreement on all matters, a Mediator should be able to assist you with all the forms, with the child support calculations and with a settlement agreement to be filed with everything else. The cost of such a Mediation process, assuming you are both in agreement with everything, should be somewhere between $300 - $750. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Diefer Law Group, P.C.
    Diefer Law Group, P.C. | Abel Fernandez
    If you don't file a response, you can still proceed with your agreement but you need to make sure that your agreement is filed with the court.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Law Offices of Frances Headley | Frances Headley
    You need not file a response if you have a signed Marital Settlement Agreement which covers all aspects of your property settlement and child visitation and support. If not, then your default can be entered and Judgment requested based solely upon her petition. You should consult a family law attorney for assistance in assuring that any agreement is complete and correct.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser
    Warner Center Law Offices of Donald F. Conviser | Donald F. Conviser
    You are taking a risk when you trust a divorcing spouse.? You would be best off filing a Response for your protection to give you a say in the ultimate outcome of your case, especially in case your wife changes her mind about anything or if your or your wife's economic condition (i.e., employment, income, etc.) changes during the divorce process.? Better safe than sorry - if you don't respond and your wife gets your default entered, you won't be able to have a say in the case or influence its outcome.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Mary W Craig P.C. | Mary W Craig
    If you file a petition, a waiver of service, and an agreement, you do not have to file an answer to the petition. The judge will wait the appropriate amount of time, sign the decree and make the agreement a part of the decree.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Barbara Fontaine, Esquire | Barbara Fontaine
    In Rhode Island, if you do not answer the divorce complaint, the Plaintiff usually gets what she asked for. You should be present at the divorce hearing even if you agree and did not file a answer, in case there is something to know about. Child support must meet the minimum state amount. You might want to testify as to what you agree to. It won't hurt to be there.
    Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    Michael Apicella
    Michael Apicella | Apicella Law and Mediation
    You can finalize your case via "default by agreement," which wouldn't require you to file a response. Hence, you can save the $395 response filing fee. If your marital settlement agreement (MSA) contains all the terms you want, then your rights will be preserved/protected. I'd strongly suggest that you hire a local family law lawyer to review your MSA to make sure it protects your interests, including long terms interests.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/10/2012
    David A. Browde, P.C.
    David A. Browde, P.C. | David Browde
    It's not an uncontested divorce if you don't file the appropriate paperwork.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 8/10/2012
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