A series of occasional blogs about divorcing in California.
Part 13. What if the respondent doesn’t want to cooperate?
We occasionally encounter divorce cases in Los Angeles where the respondent does not want to cooperate (the respondent is “dragging his/her feet” – get the vignette now?). He/she might not accept the idea of divorcing in California altogether, even actively avoiding being served.
The common question at that point is: “what are my options as a petitioner?”
It goes without saying that the service of process has to happen no matter what. The fact that the respondent is not cooperating – or is even actively sabotaging the process – does not give the petitioner any legal shortcuts to wrap up the divorce process.
After the respondent is properly served, maybe with the assistance of a process server, the petitioner has the option to file a request to enter default and file the final judgment without the signature of the respondent in some cases. In the case of a short term marriage and without any minor children, the petitioner can file the final judgment on his/her own.
However, in cases where there are minor children, or in the event of the request for spousal support in California, etc. that cannot be done, and the petition will have to leave the matters of spousal support, and eventually other issues like splitting of community properties, open or “reserved”, meaning that either party will be allowed to proactively request a revision in the future.
The Document People is a network of legal document assistants with a common purpose: helping customers with uncontested divorces. We are looking forward to offering you divorce assistance in our offices in Woodland Hills, Santa Monica, San Fernando, Glendale, Torrance, Anaheim and Oceanside.
The information contained in this blog – including information of a legal nature – is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject matter.