What happens if you file for divorce and properly serve the divorce papers on your spouse, but your spouse does not file a response with the Court within the required time allowed?
You are not stuck, you can still proceed to get divorced in the State of Maryland. You must file with the court a Request for An Order of Default, file an affidavit and proof stating that your spouse is not currenting serving in the armed forces. The proof can be obtained by visting the Department of Defense Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) website, and print out your search results. Once the court issues the default you can then request a hearing for divorce and the process can proceed without your spouse. What happens if your spouse suddenly decides to respond and participate? The default is likely to be set aside and the case will proceed with both parties participating. The issues, especially custody and visitation, are so important that Judges don't like to proceed in divorce cases without hearing evidence from both spouses.
There are many reasons why people do not initialy respond to the divorce papers. Sometimes it is denial of the divorce, sometimes it is financial inability to hire a lawyer or figure out how to file without a lawyer, sometimes it is because a spouse is hoping that the matters can be resolved outside of court, with or without the use of an attorney or mediator.
People Magazine reports that although Gwenyth Paltrow filed for divorce on April 20, 2015 her husband, Chris Martin, did not file a response with the Court. Ms. Paltrow now has the option to request that the court proceed on a default judgment. In all likelihood this is a situation where Mr. Martin and/or Ms. Paltrow want to resolve their issues outside of court with their lawyers, mediators and business managers.