Many clients ask about the Motion for Default and how it applies to their Florida Divorce. When a divorce, or dissolution of marriage, is filed in Florida, the party filing for divorce (Petitioner) will file a Petition for Dissolution of Marriage. The spouse (Respondent) is required to file an Answer within 20 days of being served with the Petition. If the Respondent fails to Answer within the 20 days, the Petitioner may file a Motion for Default. This Motion states that the Respondent has failed to respond and requests that the Clerk of Courts enter a Default. The Petitioner must file a proposed Default with the Motion. A copy of both must be sent to the Respondent.
Once the Clerk confirms that nothing has been filed by the Respondent, they will enter the Order. The result is that the Respondent may no longer object to the terms of the divorce requested in the Petition. The Petitioner can request a Final Hearing and ask the judge to enter an Order on Dissolution of Marriage granting the requests in the Petition.
Do not give up your legal rights in your divorce by failing to Answer the Petition in a timely manner. If you are uncertain about any part of the divorce process or your rights, you should seek legal counsel. Attorney Wade P. Luther has the knowledge and experience you need to ensure your rights are protected. If you would like to schedule an initial consultation with Mr. Luther, please contact us by email or by calling (407) 835-9900.