If your husband or wife has started divorce proceedings against you, it will be the court who will send you a ‘divorce petition’. You should also get:
- a notice of proceedings form
- an acknowledgment of service form
You need to respond by filling in the acknowledgment of service form and it is at this point you may want to get legal advice because if you don’t respond within 21 days, your husband or wife can continue with the divorce as if you’ve agreed.
Whether you agree or not you will need to fill in and return an acknowledgment of service form to the court within 8 days.
If You Disagree With The Divorce
In addition to the acknowledgment you will need to fill in the part that says you’re defending the divorce. Again, this is something you may want to get legal advice about.
Bear in mind that the court will send copies to your spouse, and after you return the form you have up to 21 days to say why you are defending the divorce. This is called ‘giving an answer’. Again, we recommend you get legal advice.
Starting Your Own Divorce Petition In Response
After receiving a divorce petition you may then decide to start your own divorce against your husband or wife - eg if you have evidence of their adultery or unreasonable behaviour. Here too, we recommend getting legal advice.