Is there a timeframe for divorce papers to beanswered after they have been served?

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Is there a timeframe for divorce papers to beanswered after they have been served?

Asked on November 29, 2010 under Family Law, California

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

In CA, after a spouse is served they are known as the "Respondent", and they have 30 days to file a "Response".  This document tells the court that the Respondent wishes to participate in the divorce proceedings. If the Respondent fails to file a Response within 30 days after being served with the divorce paperwork, the case proceeds without the Respondent’s participation.  The Petitioner (the spouse who filed)then  prepares a judgment and submits it to the court.  Next the Petitioner requests orders concerning custody, visitation, child support, spousal support, attorney fees, and division of property. After the "waiting period" (6 months and 1 day after the Respondent is served), the divorce becomes final.  Typically on the terms that the Petitioner has asked for.


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