If I was served with divorce papers but I don’t agree with all the terms, can I still file an answer to postpone the hearing until I am able to hire a lawyer?

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If I was served with divorce papers but I don’t agree with all the terms, can I still file an answer to postpone the hearing until I am able to hire a lawyer?

Asked on June 24, 2015 under Family Law, Texas

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

You must file an answer within the time set forth in the summons.  Filing the answer is not to postpone a hearing, but is required to preserve your rights.  If you don't file a timely answer with the court and serve it by mail on the opposing party, the opposing party will enter a default judgment against you.  This means you have lost the case and will then need to file a motion to set aside the default.

At the law library, look in the index of Pleading and Practice for answer to complaint.  This will give you the general format for an answer which denies the allegations in the opposing party's complaint.  After writing the answer, include a verification which declares under penalty of perjury that your statements in the answer are true.  Sign the verification and file the answer with verification with the court with an attached proof of service.  Mail a copy of your documents to the opposing party.


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