Getting served with divorce papers is an unpleasant experience for anyone and it’s something that should certainly be taken very seriously. It’s far too easy, all be it understandable, to react extremely emotionally when served with divorce papers. However, it’s important to keep a cool head and respond correctly in order to ensure that you make the right choices and that your best interests and your rights are sufficiently protected. It doesn’t matter whether or not you’re expecting to be served with papers, your response to a divorce petition can have a serious impact on how the case turns out in the end. It’s understandable that dealing with any divorce situation is extremely overwhelming, but there are some steps that you can take to make sure that you start your divorce on the right foot. From the moment you’re served, it’s recommended you contact a Pittsford divorce lawyer to help you make sense of the petition. In the meantime, here are the steps you should take after getting served with divorce papers:
Read the Entire Petition
You might feel a variety of emotions upon being served with divorce papers. You’re likely to feel angry, upset, stressed, or overwhelmed when you first receive the petition. Many people’s primary reaction is to set the papers aside until they cool off enough to deal with the situation, but that’s actually the worst thing that you can do. Don’t ignore divorce papers. It’s fine to take a little bit of time to calm down initially, but when you’re ready, review the petition extremely closely because it will contain critical information about the proceedings.
First off, the petition will include a deadline for your response. The divorce papers will also tell you which court the action was filed at, which is important information if you and your spouse are not on good speaking terms or if your spouse is living in a different state. Additionally, the papers will list the grounds for divorce and whether or not your spouse is filing the paperwork themselves or if they have legal representation. This is all-important basic information that is included in the petition and that you need to determine before taking any further steps. This knowledge will also help you to determine what legal strategy you think is best. Moreover, from the initial reading of the petition, you can usually figure out whether or not the divorce is going to be somewhat amicable or whether you should contact a Pittsford divorce lawyer right away and be prepared for a legal battle.
Respond to The Petition
As mentioned above, the divorce petition will contain a deadline for your response. Once you’ve determined that deadline, you need to provide it by the stated date. You will be required to respond to each separate numbered statement contained within the divorce papers. You will also have the ability to allege your own grounds for divorce and propose a different allocation of things like your debts and assets. This is particularly important for matters like child support, child custody, and alimony.
You can respond yourself, or if you’re seeking legal representation, you can have your Pittsford divorce attorney deal with the response. Either way, it needs to get done. Failing to respond to a divorce petition can result in the court granting your spouse everything. That’s right, if you don’t respond your spouse will likely receive the requests that they filed for property, liquid assets, custody, alimony, child support, and any other relevant requests contained within the divorce papers.
Hire a Pittsford Divorce Lawyer
Yes, you can deal with divorce yourself, but it is highly recommended that you seek legal representation instead. Divorces can be wildly complicated and very messy. It’s also quite unlikely that your spouse has filed for divorce without seeking any legal representation for themselves. It’s never a good situation to find yourself in for your spouse to have a lawyer, yet you’re left trying to defend yourself. There are numerous caveats contained within divorce papers, and unless you happen to have legal experience, you’re not likely to understand the ins and outs of all of them.
Things can get messy with divorce, that’s just an unfortunate fact. Because of this, it’s usually in your best interest to hire an experienced Pittsford divorce lawyer as quickly as possible in order to protect yourself and your rights. It’s especially advisable to seek legal representation if you’re dealing with a case that includes child support and child custody. It’s every parent’s worst nightmare to have their child taken away from them during divorce proceedings. If you want to avoid this happening, a lawyer is your best bet.
An experienced lawyer will also be able to read through your divorce papers to evaluate your individual situation and discuss what options you have. They have the knowledge to determine what your legal interests are and make sure that you’re completely protected during the divorce proceedings. Divorce is a stressful time, and it’s extremely overwhelming. Hiring a Pittsford divorce lawyer can help to simplify the process as much as possible. Attorney’s will also keep on top of things like deadlines and communications. And they can advise how to properly communicate with your soon to be ex-spouse during the proceedings.
If you’ve been served with divorce papers and need to hire an experienced Pittsford divorce lawyer, contact The Cimino Law Firm for a free consultation. We have over 20 years of experience helping those who have been served papers protect their rights and assets during a divorce. If you’re looking for a divorce lawyer in Pittsford, NY, contact us today for a free consultation.
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