Divorce Process – Answer & Counter Petition

In the divorce process, the opposing party has thirty (30) days in most states to submit an answer to the divorce petition. The answer is the opposing party’s statement of facts and request for relief. Often the service of an answer is waived. This is done to save the parties the cost of an additional filing fee should the matter be settled. However, if a waiver or extension is not granted by the opposing party and an answer is not filed within thirty (30) days, the original party may seek a default. A default means that the original moving party may request the relief requested in their petition without opposition. Late answers are often accepted since courts prefer determining cases on their merits rather than by default.