Spouse Not Singing Divorce Papers? Here's What You Can Do

It's possible that your spouse has received their copy of the divorce paperwork, but is refusing to put their signature on them. This could be intentional. Perhaps they want to get you angry, or because they do not understand what signing the papers mean. In any situation, not signing these papers won't be a roadblock in finalizing a divorce. Understand how it can still get done with a spouse that is unwilling to sign any necessary paperwork.

Use No-Fault Divorce

When going through a divorce, it usually starts with getting a legal separation. The separation cannot happen if one person is unwilling to do it, and not doing so can be a valid reason to get a no-fault divorce.

Every state allows a person to file for a no-fault divorce, and you do not have to list a reason for getting the divorce. Blame is not placed on either person, which is what may prevent your spouse from contesting the divorce. Keep in mind that divorces with fault can become problematic due to the accusations or language in the documents, which could be what has kept your spouse from signing the necessary paperwork.

No-fault divorces can take a while to process, with some states like Illinois taking up to 2 years to get it done. This can give you some time to try reconciling the marriage until the divorce is officially approved by the court.

Serve Your Spouse The Paperwork

You'll need to get the divorce petition from your city's local court house, or find it online. Fill out the paperwork, submit it, and the clerk will give you a summons for your spouse. The summons will give your spouse specific instructions about responding to the paperwork.

It is crucial to have a process server give these papers directly to your spouse. They provide proof that the paperwork was received by your spouse, so there is no doubt that they are aware of the court summons.

Get A Default Divorce

When you have no luck with your spouse responding to paperwork, which includes attending any scheduled hearings, a family lawyer can inform you about getting a default divorce. It's a way to get a judge to approve the divorce by showing that your spouse has not been responding to your requests, and your spouse will waive any rights by not signing the paperwork or showing up to court. The court will uphold the divorce, and it will be legal.

If you need help with any of these steps, consult with a family law attorney in your area.