Sometimes when people file for divorce, their spouse decides that they are not going to be cooperative and go along with the process. Whether they do not want to get divorced themselves or they simply wish to gum up the works, having a spouse who won’t cooperate during a divorce can be a pain. It is not an insurmountable issue though. The state of Illinois understands that you should not be stuck in a marriage forever because one person will not act like an adult. A Morton divorce lawyer from our firm can help you start the divorce process and figure out what to do next, whether your spouse cooperates or not.
What Happens When You Send Your Spouse Divorce Papers?
Only one member of a couple needs to file and begin the divorce process in Illinois. Once the work on your end is complete, the divorce papers get sent to your spouse. A process server does their best to find your soon-to-be ex and give them the papers. Then they are supposed to respond.
What If Your Spouse Does Not Sign the Divorce Papers?
Sometimes a spouse decides not to respond. Maybe they do not want a divorce. Perhaps they are just being spiteful. It does not really matter. Whatever their motivation is, they are delaying the process and making it difficult for you to just go on with your life.
This is why the default judgment exists. It allows a person to move on and complete the divorce process, even when their spouse does not want to cooperate and help them move things along.
What is a Default Judgment?
After your spouse is served with divorce papers, they must respond within 30 days. If they do not do that, you can file for a motion to default. This means that the divorce can now move forward even with just one spouse present for all of the court dates.
The spouse who does not respond will still be informed of hearings, court dates, and other major developments in the case. They might choose to continue to ignore everything, or they could decide to actually participate. If they keep ignoring any important dates, a judge can make a final decision and rule in favor of you, the spouse that filed. This ruling can cover a variety of important issues, including child custody, asset division, and alimony.
If your spouse wants to give up their chance to be heard, that is their prerogative. It pays to be prepared for anything though, so make sure that you have an experienced attorney on your side when you file for divorce.
Speak to a Lawyer
If you are ready to move forward with a divorce, contact Butler, Giraudo & Meister, P.C. We can set up an initial consultation and tell you more about what our legal team can do for you.