Steps For Filing For A Divorce Without The Consent Of Your Spouse
Not quite a long time ago, a divorce could be granted to a couple only if both the parties mutually consented to it. Usually, this led to a lot of conflicts between the parties involved and also caused an undue delay in achieving a final resolution. However, with the transforming lifestyle patterns of a more independent society, the state law of California has changed its outlook towards divorce litigation within the state. As per the present family laws, a lack of consent of other spouse is not considered as a ground for not granting a divorce to the applicant. However, there are certain steps that need to be followed in order to achieve a favorable verdict in such a one-sided divorce.
The No-Fault divorce in California
California is a ‘no fault’ divorce state, which implies that a spouse filing for a divorce is not obliged to provide an evidence of a wrongdoing of the other partner as a basis for the petition. Instead of playing the blame game, the individuals in California can be granted a divorce purely on the basis of citing an ‘irreparable breakdown of the marriage’ or ‘irreconcilable difference’ between the couple. So if you are looking for a divorce without the consent of your partner, you can still file a petition for a no fault divorce that leaves no room for your spouse to contest you on the grounds for the divorce.
Serving the legal documents to the other party
The second step you need to take is serving your partner with the divorce action documents by means of a registered process server, a sheriff’s service or through certified mail. Your spouse is not allowed to cause undue delay to the divorce proceeding by deliberately avoiding the service. Contrary to the popular belief, your spouse cannot refuse to accept the divorce documents when presented to him by the other party. In the event that your spouse intentionally avoids the service by refusing to accept the documents, he will still be considered served. If your spouse cannot be located, the court of law may order for a service by publication in the local area newspaper.
Waiting for your spouse’s response
Now that you have stated your intent to divorce your spouse through one of the several methods, you need to wait for him or her to respond to your divorce action within the statutory time duration. If in case your spouse doesn’t respond to your actions at all, or responds and refuses to consent to the divorce, you can still proceed with the litigation in the court of law on the basis of ‘no fault’.
If your spouse has refused to consent for a divorce, you may consult a professional divorce attorney for sound legal advice on how to proceed with the litigation thereon.
Getting divorced in California can be complicated. Download our free eBook, 18 Important Things to Know About California Divorce to educate yourself on the process.
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