Received divorce papers? What to do next

On Behalf of | Jul 26, 2021 | Divorce |

Residents of Libertyville and other areas of Illinois may want to learn more about what you should do when a petition for divorce comes your way. The petitioner has filed with the court and the spouse, or defendant, must answer within a set period. Know that the serving is happening. You might be this spouse.

One should think of divorce papers as a legal suit, not unlike a lawsuit. You must respond within a certain period, usually 30 days.

What do you say when you answer?

You should clearly state your position on an item, such as requests for property division, child custody and support. There are pre-printed papers for divorce where you check the boxes with “admitted” or “denied.”

For example, a custody demand, such as sole custody, has been set forth by the petitioner. You do not agree and prefer joint custody. If you deny this, you would answer the request with a brief statement in support of your view.

If you don’t answer, it goes to “default”

It is an assumption that the petition was properly served. In the case that if you have not answered in the set amount of time, the petition becomes approved as stated, and you cannot change the terms.

If this does happen, the defendant can ask the court to set aside the default so that they can contest the petition as written. However, you will need to have good legal reasons that will justify this move.

Challenges through the process

Divorce is never easy. There are many challenges along the way which may have complications, like when children are involved. You will need to protect of your financial interests as you navigate the waters of divorce during a stressful period.

Aside from taking a few deep breaths after you have received divorce papers, you should consider your options during this difficult time. It might be a smart move to obtain the services of an experienced and trusted attorney who will help you clearly sort through the emotional issues, having your interests in mind.

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