The Truth - the Winning Argument for Your Case

25 Jun. 2012

Can One Spouse Get a Divorce if the Other Does Not Want It?

Posted By The Buncher Law Corporation

Prior to digging deeper into this topic, I want to challenge you to decide what your ultimate goal of filing for divorce. Many people think they want a divorce when in fact what they truly want is to get the other person's attention - see last week's installment "How to Save Money in a Divorce." The problem is that once you file for divorce you have let the flood gates go and typically, there is no reconciliation after one party has filed.

The person initiating the filing is called the "Petitioner" and the other spouse becomes the "Respondent." The Petitioner is the party filing for the dissolution of marriage with the courts and the Petitioner does not need any signatures from the Respondent to file this paperwork. It is up to the "Respondent" to file a response to the petition within 30 days of being served by the Petitioner.

Given how the court system is set up, it is better to ask the question another way: "Can one spouse deny the other a divorce?" In the State of California, there is only one answer: "No."

If a Respondent chooses not to file a response to the Petitioner then the court will proceed as follows; I've broken the process down into four steps:

If the Respondent chooses not to participate in the divorce proceedings, they are in fact giving up their rights to contribute evidence as to how the judge will rule on the division of community property as well as spousal support and child support.

Categories: Divorce, Family Law
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