Do served divorce papers expire?

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Do served divorce papers expire?

I filed my divorce papers and hand served them to my ex; that was before Thanksgiving.

Asked on January 7, 2011 under Family Law, North Carolina

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Well, no they do not "expire" so to speak but you are required under the law to Answer the Petition within a certain time frame or the Petitioner (you) can move for default judgement against your Husband for his failure to "appear" in the action.  Here is my concern with this question: every state has a set of rules on how you are to serve a person in a lawsuit.  Personal service - handing them the papers - is considered the "best" service around.  However, parties to a lawsuit are not generally permitted to serve other parties in certain jurisdictions.  You served your husband.  You need to find out if that type of service is proper in North Carolina.  If it is not the service is not valid and the lawsuit can not go forward because the Court does not have the right to make a ruling as to your husband. Good luck.


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