If your spouse has served you with divorce summons, then you are now the respondent in a divorce case. Go through the papers that you have received. Most likely, you will receive a Petition, and a divorce Summons.

The Petition will inform you about what your spouse, or domestic partner, wants. The Summons will inform you about your rights during the divorce process. In the summons, you will also be prevented from moving out of the state with your children. It’s important to go through these documents carefully. Once you receive the summons, it is also important to speak to a family lawyer in Los Angeles who can explain the contents of the documents, and also advise you about what to do next.

Remember, there are several options open to you. If you choose to do nothing, it means that you are giving up your right to participate in the case. If you already have a pre-existing notarized agreement with your spouse, in which you decide that you want to end the marriage, and have decided on other important aspects, like child custody, child support, alimony, division of assets and other things, you also don’t have to do anything.

You can also choose to file a response with the court. If you have reached an agreement with your spouse on matters of child custody, support and alimony, you are now in an uncontested divorce. If you have not reached an agreement with your spouse on these matters, you are in a contested divorce.

Get in touch with a family lawyer in Los Angeles to learn more about how to respond when you’re served with divorce papers. It’s important for you to protect your rights as soon as divorce proceedings are initiated, especially when it comes to child custody, and alimony.