What Happens When I Am Served Divorce Papers in New York?
If you were served divorce papers unexpectedly, your initial reaction may be to ignore them. However, in the long run, this will not help you in both the emotional and legal sense. If you are unsure of how to handle this situation, continue reading to learn how an experienced Long Island divorce attorney at The Pollack Law Firm can assist you through the proceedings.
What is the authorized way to serve divorce papers in New York?
Below is a comprehensive guide on how to officially serve divorce papers, according to New York law:
- First, your spouse likely hired an attorney who prepared a divorce complaint and filed it with the New York court.
- Then, you were likely served a document titled Summons and Complaint for Divorce. This document states that your spouse is suing you for divorce and also outlines what they want to receive in the settlement agreement, such as property, alimony, child custody, and child support. Later, the New York court will use this document to hear and determine your case.
- Finally, this document must have been served to you within 10 days of your spouse’s attorney filing the divorce complaint. It also must have been personally hand-delivered by your spouse to you, unless you agreed that it can be delivered through an attorney.
If this is not the procedure that your spouse followed, then contact our firm immediately. We can help you fight against this, if that is your desire.
What steps should I follow after being served divorce papers?
After being served divorce papers, it is required that you respond to the court within a certain period of time. Additionally, you may have to serve your spouse with a copy of your response. In the state of New York, you have 20 days from the time you were initially served. Failure to do so will lead the New York court to assume that you do not contest the divorce and that you agree to all of the terms written in the summons. Ultimately, this will grant your spouse the divorce, and everything else that they requested in the settlement, by default.
Further, it is necessary that you know your options when it comes to divorce proceedings. For example, you and your spouse can decide to call off your divorce, take it to court, or settle an agreement through different types of dispute resolutions. To help you navigate what path is in your best interest, reach out to a skilled Nassau County divorce attorney today.
Contact our experienced Nassau County firm
The Pollack Law Firm, P.C., rated Nassau County’s “BEST” divorce lawyers and proudly serving clients in Nassau and Suffolk County for more than 25 years, is always available to assist and represent parties in divorce, separation, and all other matrimonial and family law matters. Contact us online or call today to schedule your complimentary case analysis: (516) 938-3330.