If you have a full agreement on all issues, or the responding party will not file a response or contest the orders you are requesting, your divorce will proceed as a default or uncontested action. We will prepare all required forms needed to obtain a Judgment of Dissolution of Marriage.
If your case will be contested, there are generally three phases of the case: the initiating or respondent documents, declaration of disclosure, and Judgment. If you need immediate orders in your case, such as for custody or childsupport, you may also need to set a hearing date to ask a Judge to issue the orders you are requesting.
Our initiating documents package will provide all documents necessary to open a case. Your initial pleadings will inform the other party what orders you are seeking. Further, once the other party has been served with these documents, the court will have jurisdiction to make orders affecting him or her, and the mandatory six month waiting period required before your marriage is dissolved will begin to run.
If you have been served with a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage, you have thirty days from the date of service to serve and file a Response. Our respondent documents package will provide all documents necessary to respond to a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage.
Declaration of Disclosure
In all cases, the petitioning party must serve a preliminary declaration of disclosure. In a contested case both parties must serve a preliminary and a final declaration of disclosure unless the final is waived by both parties. In the Declaration of Disclosure the parties must disclose all assets and debts, and other financial information, to the other party.
If you have begun the case on your own and have now reached agreements, or obtained court orders, resolving all issues, both parties will need to sign a final Judgement which will be filed along with several other forms included in this package.
The documents required to obtain a legal separation mirror those required for a divorce. The process and orders which can be obtained are also, with the exception being that the marital status is not dissolved upon entry of your Judgment. After obtaining a legal separation, if you later desire to be divorced, in order to remarry or for any other reason, you will need to file a separate action for divorce.