Is the Response supposed to be sent to me from the court, after my spouse files it with the court?
1. Normally the response/answer is sent to you directly from your spouse or his lawyer at the same time that he submits it to the court for filing with a certificate on the document that tells the court that a copy has been mailed to you.
If he sent it to me directly (without being stamped) after 30 days, is it in Default?
2. No. He just needs to send one on a timely basis to the court for filing and serve you with a copy which may or may not be filed stamped.
My husband never sent me any declarations. How do I proceed to set a trial and the statement of issues?
3. Family law
cases are set for trial either (1) when the court deems the case to be at issue (an "at-issue order") or (2) when a party files a request for trial setting. Check your court's local rule on this.
S.D. Super.Ct. Rules, Div. V, Fam. Law Rule 5.2.8.K--court's local "Family Settlement Conference At Issue Form" required to set long cause cases for trial after unsuccessful mediation
S.F. Uniform Rule 11.11--filing court's local Family Law At-Issue Memorandum commences trial setting process for resolution of financial issues (custody/visitation
calendared for trial only by court order);
L.A. Super.Ct. Rule 14.13--either party "may file" request for trial setting to set contested case for trial;
Santa Clara Super.Ct. Family Rule 6.A--request for trial not required "but may be filed" (except that custody/visitation calendared for trial only by court order);
But here is what I suggest you try:
Serve your spouse with Form FL-300 even though he is in jail. If he does not respond to the request, the court will likely grant your request for sole custody
. If he does respond, the court may allow him to appear in court under some circumstances, or he can have an attorney represent him at custody or divorce
hearings. However, since he cannot actually care for the child from jail, he won’t be awarded physical custody
, but he can request to have his children brought to the jail for visitation. The judge will then consider whether this type of visitation is in the child's best interests.
The form is at the link above.
IF YOU DO NOT HAVE ANY CHILDREN AND JUST WANT A DIVORCE PROCESSED:
If your imprisoned spouse responds BUT NOW DOES NOT contest the divorce, THEN YOU JUST NEED HIM TO WITHDRAW HIS RESPONSE AND THEN THE JUDGE CAN GRANT YOU A DIVORCE JUDGMENT AFTER 6 MONTHS.
At the link above you will find a list of the forms that need to be completed in Orange county that you can use as a go-by. If he truly does not contest the divorce, then he should fill these out with you and help you get them filed. If he contests any aspect of the divorce, you may have problems and delays unless the court is willing to issue an order to have him transported to court for one or more hearings.
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