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dismiss the divorce

In order to stop a divorce once it has been filed, the petitioner would have to file a Request for Dismissal before the spouse (also called the respondent) has responded and prior to a judgment being entered. If the spouse has responded, then he/she would need to be served with the dismissal form and sign it. The petitioner would then file the signed Request for Dismissal with the proof of service and the court would dismiss the divorce.

In California, divorces or legal separations can be dismissed ‘without prejudice’ meaning that once the case is dismissed, either party can file a new divorce or legal separation case again if they so desire. Often when people dismiss their case, they later file again due to an argument or dispute. For this reason, it is best to speak with an experienced divorce lawyer and possibly a counselor before dismissing the case so that there is an understanding as to the problems in the marriage and what is required to address the issues.
It’s important to understand that the court cannot dismiss a divorce or legal separation after the judgment has been entered. Further, the case cannot be dismissed if there is a spousal support or child support order, restraining order or an upcoming hearing date. Be advised that the court will usually dismiss a case on its own after approximately 5 years and when there has been very little activity and no appearances to requests for case review.
Do you have questions about dismissing a divorce or legal separation? Legal Action Workshop has answers. Our knowledgeable divorce attorneys are ready to assist you. We offer affordable low flat fees and confidential lawyer consultations by phone or in person. Call us now @ 1-800-HELP-444!
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  1. tawna says

    If a divorce is dismissed with prejudice does that mean the couple will never be able to file for a divorce in the future?

    • Brenda Platt-Drucker says

      Tawna:
      When it was dismissed, were you the petitioner? If you were, did you serve your spouse? In most cases, the divorce would be dismissed without prejudice. You may have said ‘with prejudice’ by mistake…however, if the spouse did not respond and hence did not sign the dismissal, then he/she could file for divorce. If both spouses signed the dismissal with prejudice then you cannot file for divorce…but there may be a motion that you could file to rectify the situation.
      If the divorce is in California and you wish to discuss, please call us @ 818-630-5503.
      Thanks for contacting Legal Action Workshop

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