For any couple who vowed to love and cherish one another in front of God and hundreds of their friends and family, divorce is probably the last thing they would want to go through (that is, if they even consider it an option). Nevertheless, there are instances when living separate lives seems to be the only solution to keep the sanity of both parties. In fact, in most cases, ex-couples forge healthier relationships after the divorce has been granted.
The first step for filing a divorce is the accomplishment of legal divorce papers. Think of it as an unedited script where every possible reason that prompted the filing of divorce is written and provided in great detail. No matter if the reason for divorce is inappropriate conduct while under the marriage bonds, desertion, bigamy, abandonment, adultery, or abuse (emotional, mental, or physical), everything is laid out in the divorce papers. The one filing the divorce should make sure nothing is left out to avoid any loopholes. You or your lawyer must document all the facts pertaining to the reasons of divorce. Before the forms are filed, however, you must sign the declaration part, an affirmation that everything written in the papers are true.
After completing and filing the legal divorce papers, the sheriff’s office will now serve the complaint to your spouse (or the “defendant”). It is very important that you let your attorney know the exact home and work address of your husband or wife, and the possible addresses where your spouse might be. This is important so it would be easier for the sheriff to serve the papers, thus speeding up the divorce process.
After the legal divorce papers had been served, your spouse gets thirty days to answer your divorce complaint. Remember though that the defendant may or may not give you an answer. If your spouse decides to do nothing during the 30-day period, it will automatically mean that the divorce is uncontested. After this, you and your attorney will file a paper known as “motion for default judgment” which requests the court to proceed and set a hearing for divorce.
A divorce case requires a lot of paperwork. At the same time, you are required to read and understand everything that’s stated in the divorce papers that you would be signing. Otherwise, your petition for divorce may be rejected if errors (even minor ones) and discrepancies are found. It is for this reason that many lawyers go over various legal books like the ones from Butterworths to review and re-acquaint themselves with the Family Law. This helps them see if there is basis for the filing of divorce or if adjustments need to be made in order for the court to accept the reasons.