I was served with divorce papers what is my next step?

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I was served with divorce papers what is my next step?

Post  Admin on Mon Sep 21, 2009 12:22 pm

The Petition initially filed and served requests the court to grant a dissolution of the marriage and for any other orders applicable to the spouses’ situation (for example, dividing the property of the spouses or spousal maintenance). After the non-filing spouse is served with the initial papers in the case, that spouse has the right to reply to the requests made in the Petition.

The reply to the Petition is made in a written document called the "Response" and the spouse making the reply is referred to as the "Respondent." The Response gives the Respondent the opportunity to agree with the requests that the Petitioner has made or to ask for different orders from the court. The Response must be filed with the clerk of the court and a copy must be mailed to the Petitioner. As with all papers filed in Superior court, the form of the Response must comply with court rules and state laws governing size, spacing and content. Discount Divorce will prepare all documents that conform to these standards.

The Respondent should have an original Response and at least two copies (some counties require three copies) of the Response ready when filing with the clerk of the court. The clerk of the court keeps the original in the court file and stamps the date and evidence of filing on the copies. One copy must be served by mailing to the Petitioner. The Respondent keeps the other copy.

There is a time limit for filing the Response. Court rules provide that the Response must be filed within 20 days of the date that the Summons and Petition are served on the Respondent in Arizona, or within 30 days if service is made on the Respondent outside the state.

In addition, Respondent could file other requests with the court instead of or in addition to the Response. For example, the Respondent could ask the court to dismiss the case if the Arizona court does not have authority to grant a dissolution because the Petitioner has not lived in the state long enough to file here or because a divorce case has been started somewhere else. Respondent could also ask for temporary orders. The Respondent simply files a Response initially in most cases.

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