What happens if my spouse refuses to sign divorce papers?

If your spouse refuses to show up for scheduled hearings or sign the divorce papers, you can request a default divorce. You can file for this as long as your spouse has not filed a response within 30 days of being served with a divorce petition. In this case, the court will uphold the request for divorce, as well as the original terms, as long as they adhere to standard settlement agreement terms. This happens because the court sees the other spouse’s absence or lack of acknowledgment to be an agreement to the terms of the divorce.

In the case where you cannot get your spouse to sign because they cannot be found, you can file for divorce and list the reason as abandonment. This type of divorce filing typically requires a 6-month waiting period.