Some people think getting a divorce is a straightforward process, especially when a couple has been separated for a long time and there seems to be no dispute regarding property, spousal support, or child custody. Because of this simplistic thinking towards divorce, some people go about the process on their own, which can be a terrible mistake.
The truth is the process of divorce involves in-depth knowledge and experience of the law, whether or not there are disputes on the issues. One needs to know the proper inclusions to your divorce petitions, how to serve your spouse the notice of your divorce petition that adheres to the law’s standards, and what measures to take if your spouse fails to respond. These are only a few of the things one needs to know in order to arrive at a favorable outcome and avoid making mistakes with profound and long-term effects. To help you with these and other important details about the process of divorce, you need an experienced family law attorney.
We had a recent case involving a Japanese couple who were married in Japan in 1996. Shinji and Kazue had two children in the United States, a daughter in 2002 and a son in 2007. The couple separated in 2010, with Shinji returning to Japan with the children, supposedly without opposition from Kazue, who stayed in Maryland. Later in 2018, Shinji filed for divorce. Shinji, it turned out, did not proceed with the divorce without consulting a lawyer. His lawyer made sure that Kazue was served notice of the divorce petition at her place of work. Kazue, however, did not respond to the notice. When your spouse fails to respond to your petition for divorce, you may request the judge for a default judgement and ask for the terms in your petition to be granted or enforced as long as you are able to prove that your spouse was indeed served the notice of the divorce petition properly.
Because Kazue had personally served the notice and failed to respond, the judge granted Shinji the default judgement, child support, and a monetary award amounting to $134,000. Kazue was given notice that she only had thirty days to respond or ask for reversal of the default judgement, but she did nothing. When several months had passed, she asked for the judgement to be reversed. However, it was too late because Shinji and his attorney completed the requirements of the law every step of the way, which is to give notice to Kazue. The only way out of the default judgement at that time was if Kazue was able to prove that Shinji had done something to obstruct or prevent her from responding to the notices given to her. Since Kazue had no proof or evidence to show, the court upheld its decision and granted in favor of Shinji.
Every detail of the process of divorce involves careful knowledge and prime experience to explore every strategy and arrive at the best option for you and your case, even if there are no disputes involved. Our team of divorce attorneys have experience dealing with various types of cases and of unresponsive clients. Schedule your consultation with one of our attorneys today so we can get started on the perfect strategy for your case.