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Can I Get Divorced If My Spouse Wants To Stay Married

A frequent question at consultations is “can I get divorced even if my spouse refuses”. The answer is “yes”. A court is not going to force you to remain married. The reality is that it is not hard to get divorced so long as one party wants the divorce. All you need to do is file the Complaint for Divorce and have it property served upon your spouse. If your spouse does not answer within the required timeframe, you have the right to “default” him/her. Many times, people assume that if they just avoid the Complaint for Divorce and the timeframes that they will not get divorced. However, that logic is absolutely flawed. Your spouse does not control whether or not you will be able to get divorced from him/her. They are only able to drag out the litigation by being uncooperative. However, the court has a best practice rule wherein the goal is to have your divorce completed within one year from the filing date of the Complaint for Divorce. Therefore, if your spouse tells you that he/she is going to object to the divorce, do not be worried – you will not be forced to remain married to him/her but be sure to consult with an attorney so that you file all of the appropriate paperwork and comply with the Court Rules. [posted by Lynda Picinic, Esq.]