In a previous posting, we addressed some basic definitions of the two types of divorces, beginning with contested divorces. Now as we enter the arena of uncontested divorce, we can make point out a few technical differences.
On to uncontested divorce. In this type of proceeding, both spouses have reached an accord and are in agreement about all aspects and details of the pending divorce. An uncontested divorce is generally a quicker and smoother process, since theoretically there would not be any stops or starts in the process due to disagreements. Additionally, there is no need for the court to be involved in decisions, since the two parties have already made the required ones. The final settlement may be reached out of court in an uncontested divorce case, bringing the desired conclusion – divorce – to both parties.
Suppose one spouse files for divorce, and the other spouse does not respond to the filing. That is known as a default – and an uncontested case. If the second spouse files a response (contesting) but then down the road, the two spouses reach an agreement, that is also considered uncontested.
There is another situation, known as a “true default” case. That is the situation when more than 30 days have passed since the second spouse was notified of the divorce filing, but no response has taken place, that is, nothing has been filed with the court, and no agreement has been reached between the parties. It may seem unlikely, to those who consider divorce a two-way process, for an involved party not to have a say or not to respond at all. But it does happen. And when it does occur, the non-responding party is forfeiting his/her voice in what happens next – when the court considers the filer/petitioner’s case for a divorce settlement. As a former colleague put it, “if you’re not there, you don’t get a vote.”
This blog is meant only as an overview for informational purposes. If you have questions about how California divorce laws may affect you, or you are contemplating divorce, it is in your best interest to consult an experienced family law attorney. When you team up with Dinnebier & Demmerle, you have all the know-how and specialized experience of Orange County’s premier family law specialists working for you. Any divorce can present challenges, and high net worth divorces can be extraordinarily complex. We’re here to craft a legal solution that meets and exceeds your expectations. Please call at your convenience to set up a consultation. We are right here in Tustin, Orange County. When you’re ready to move forward, call us at 714-838-1099.