Busted But Not Responsible? Tips For Your Defense

If you've been arrested for a crime you didn't commit, you need to defend your legal rights. You have the right to an attorney who can help you present your case. After being wrongly accused of something myself, I learned quickly how to navigate the legal avenues to have my case dismissed. My attorney was a great resource for building the case, and because of my understanding of the law, it worked. I created this site to share what I learned along the way and some other great tips for others who have been wrongly accused and arrested for a crime.

You've Been Served: What Happens After Divorce Papers Are Served

Law Blog

Even those expecting it can feel a sense of shock and confusion after being served with divorce papers. What you do next is important, though. Read on and find out what your next moves must be after being served.

Get a Lawyer and Get Protection

Get over the surprise of being served and begin taking action — that is always a great way to deal with stressful situations. In this case, speaking to a divorce attorney very soon is important. If you have been served, that probably means that your spouse already has a lawyer, and you have only a limited time to act, as the papers served to you are not just for informational purposes. As the respondent, you have to respond to the petition. If you take a look at the paperwork you were served, you might notice that your spouse is asking for certain things. That might be property, payment of debts, child custody, or more. If you fail to respond, all of those things might be granted to your spouse. Only by responding can you hope to have your say in the proceedings. Of course, if you are in agreement with the divorce and all of its provisions, you can always get divorced by default by not responding.

What Rights Do You Have With Divorce?

Just because your spouse filed for divorce first doesn't mean you have no rights when it comes to important provisions like children, assets, and debts. States have different ways of looking at property and debt based on either community property or equitable distribution rules. That means you may either get half of all debt and property (community property) or those things might be negotiated depending on the full marital settlement agreement (equitable distribution). When it comes to custody and visitation, it's vital that you let your lawyer know that you want custody and why you feel you are entitled to it right away.

Negotiations, Mediation, and Agreements

The remainder of divorce happenings is made up of trying to resolve disagreements over the major issues. With that in mind, you both might be ordered to attend mediation meetings in which a neutral mediator attempts to get each side to give in just a bit and come to some agreements that can be put into the divorce paperwork. You can also expect that both sides will be ordered to come forth with financial disclosures and possibly participate in a child study if custody is not agreed upon.

This can be a confusing time, but you can trust your divorce lawyer to know what is happening at all times and to protect your custody, debt, and property rights.


28 September 2021