How long does a divorce take if I am not willing to sign the papers?

My husband of 26 years told me he was going for a walk. The next thing I know is that he says he is having an affair and going to Costa Rica. He has not tried to contact me afterwards. I know he is out of the country because he spoke to one of our children. I found out his mistress is asking him to get a divorce. If he files and I don’t sign, can he still do it and how long will it take?

Asked on July 30, 2010 under Family Law, Florida


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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If he files and you don't sign the papers, he can still get a don't have to.  Once he has a divorce complaint served on you, you are will then have notice of the divorce proceedings.  If you fail to answer the complaint within the specified time (in FL you have 20 days to respond) he can proceed with a "default divorce".  Basically, this is a divorce that is granted in the absence of one of the parties. And typically, it is granted on the terms requested by the petitioner (the party who filed). 

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