If my spouse refuses to sign divorce papers just because she doesn’t want me to move on, are there any more options to get a divorce?

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If my spouse refuses to sign divorce papers just because she doesn’t want me to move on, are there any more options to get a divorce?

Asked on December 22, 2015 under Family Law, Mississippi

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

In a situation such as this, the petitioning spouse (the one filing for divorce) can obtain what is known as a "divorce by default". As long as a valid summons/complaint has been filed with the court and the respondent (the non-filing spouse) has been properly served, the petitioner is entitled to a dissolution of the marriage if the respondent fails to file an answer within a specified time (typically 30-60 days in most states). After that period, they will be deemed to have "defaulted". Accordingly, the petitioner can then file their final paperwork and appear before the judge, who will make their ruling solely on the petitioner's written/oral testimony. A divorce is then granted generally on the terms that are requested.
If the petitioner does timely respond, then both parties will need to appear in court before a judge, who will then work out the terms of the divorce. Note: The divorce can't be stopped simply because one party wants to stay married.
At this point, you should consult directly with a divorce attorney in your area. They can advise you further.


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