What Happen if My Spouse Refuses to Sign Divorce Papers?

What Happen if My Spouse Refuses to Sign Divorce Papers?

divorce papers

In some cases, divorces occur due to mutual dissatisfaction with the marriage. However, there are cases where one party may not concur with the decision to call it quits, leading to a refusal to sign the divorce papers. This, in turn, can cause the legal process to become more protracted, expensive, and time-consuming. If you find yourself in this situation, it can be challenging to determine how to proceed. Please continue reading to learn what steps you should take if your spouse refuses to sign divorce papers and how a reliable Nassau County Divorce Attorney can help you today. 

Can I still pursue a divorce if my spouse won’t cooperate?

If you decide to dissolve your marriage, the first step is filing a divorce petition with the court. As the petitioner, it’s your responsibility to give legal notice to your spouse that you want a divorce. Your spouse, the respondent, must file an answer within 20 days after being served to notify the court that they received the petition.

In New York, you can pursue an uncontested or contested divorce. When both parties agree to all the terms that will apply to the termination of the marriage, they can seek an uncontested divorce. This is the preferable scenario as it helps couples avoid litigation, saving time and money. However, if one spouse does not agree to the divorce terms, you must pursue a contested divorce.

If your spouse fails to cooperate by failing to answer your divorce petition by the deadline, you can request the judge grant your divorce by default. In a default judgment, the judge can grant the requests outlined in your divorce petition, as the respondent has not disputed any of the issues. By failing to answer the petition, it can be considered as them agreeing to the terms. Therefore, the judge has no reason to deny your terms.

What steps should I take if my spouse refuses to sign divorce papers?

If your spouse refuses to sign the divorce papers, the divorce will still go through. However, it will likely drag on the divorce process. Fortunately, your spouse does not have to sign the papers for the divorce decree to be finalized. Therefore, your spouse cannot stop the divorce by refusing to sign the papers.

The best course of action if your spouse refuses to sign your divorce papers, is to retain the legal services of an experienced attorney, who can help guide you through this process and help you understand your options. At The Pollack Law Firm, P.C., we are prepared to help you fight for the best possible outcome to transition to the next chapter of your life.

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