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What Happens When One Spouse Ignores a Divorce Petition in South Carolina?
At the David W. Martin Law Group, our divorce attorneys in South Carolina know that ending a marriage is a difficult decision for anyone.
When one spouse insists on a divorce, and the other is not completely on board, there is typically nothing the opposing party can do to stop the legal process.
In fact, the worst approach is to ignore the divorce petition altogether.
Here is why.
What Happens When a Spouse Files for Divorce in South Carolina?
Whether you are the spouse serving divorce papers or the one receiving them the documents will fully establish the marital details and the grounds for divorce.
The spouse who receives the divorce petition will be informed of the impending timeline for a response and will then have 30 days to examine the paperwork, understand what is listed therein, contact a divorce attorney or decide to represent themselves, and frame their response.
The recipient then must answer the complaint by agreeing, disagreeing, or denying knowledge of specific complaints listed in the contents of the petition, sign, date, and return the paperwork within the listed timeline and await a hearing date.
Can I File a Divorce Counterclaim in South Carolina?
If the spouse who receives the divorce petition refuses to agree with or deny the claims listed in the documents, he or she could file a divorce counterclaim in South Carolina.
Counterclaims are often popular when spouses would like to analyze their complete child custody options or the financial support requests listed by the petitioner.
In short, if one spouse lists that he or she wants full custody of the children, and the other would like to contest that request and pursue joint custody, he or she could file a divorce counterclaim.
What Happens If I Do Not Respond to a Divorce Petition in South Carolina?
If the protected period has elapsed with no response, the petitioning spouse will move forward with the divorce proceedings regardless.
If you choose not to respond to the divorce papers, simply hoping the process would be halted as a result, you may lose the chance to state your wishes, tell your side of the story, or counter your spouse’s claims.
Failing to participate will not stop the divorce from moving forward.
Instead, the court will assume that you are refusing to participate, which risks the judge making default judgments on your behalf. That could mean your spouse could potentially receive the relief requested, including more alimony, marital property, or child custody.
Even if you are against the divorce, do not forfeit your rights.
Contact our skilled South Carolina divorce attorneys today to learn more about your rights, and how you can protect your future by responding to the divorce petition promptly. This approach will help your divorce proceed faster and smoother, so you can heal and start anew. With offices throughout South Carolina, including Rock Hill, Fort Mill, Greenville, Spartanburg, Mount Pleasant, and along the coast, our South Carolina divorce attorneys are ready to protect your interests in a divorce.
What Happens If I Never Received the South Carolina Divorce Petition?
In South Carolina, court documents including divorce petitions must be delivered in person to ensure that the recipient has been properly notified.
Dodging the process server will result in the petitioner publishing a public notice, leaving the documents with family or friend, or both. Avoiding the paperwork will not stop the legal process.
Have You Been Served With Divorce Papers in South Carolina? Protect Your Rights. Contact the David W. Martin Law Group Today.
No matter which side of the divorce you are on, it is difficult to pursue a swift result when the other party is not cooperating with the legal process.
Whether you are the one who filed for divorce or the one who is being served the petition, you have rights and multiple legal options that can help protect your future.