How long do you have to respond to a divorce petition?

UPDATED: Nov 16, 2012

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How long do you have to respond to a divorce petition?

My ex re-filed our divorce papers because he had to make an amendment. He re-filed on the 18th of last month and about a week later I was served with the papers. I did not understand all the legal details, so I had a lawyer at my work look at them. There are some things I do not agree with in regards to his requests about child custody. I would like to respond so that he does not just “win” the case simply because I didn’t. I would like to know how much time I have to respond? Does the time starts from the day he filed the18th or from the day that I was served roughly a week later.

Asked on November 16, 2012 under Family Law, California


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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

In CA, you have thirty days from the date you were served with the petition for dissolution of marriage to file your response.  Your response has to be filed with the court and served by mail on the opposing party.

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