A Massachusetts divorce has a way of sneaking up on people - both in the request for it and in the process that follows. While we all have a generalized idea of how divorce works because, we've all watched movies and movies teach us that there are lawyers and paperwork that needs to be signed, it can be and often is far more complicated than people realize. So, what are some parts of the divorce process that many don't see coming?
Service of U.S. state court paperwork is similar to serving on exclusive federal land - the Army, for example, will first ascertain whether the servicemember will voluntarily accept service. If not, the requesting party is advised that he/she must comply with the requirements of the host nation or Hague Convention on the Service Abroad of Judicial and Extrajudicial Documents in Civil or Commercial Matters.
Sometimes a spouse can be blind-sided by his or her partner's request for a divorce. More often, however, both spouses share a sense that the relationship is broken and can't be fixed. When it comes to that, does it matter who files first? According to some financial and legal divorce consultants, it does.
When one or both spouses in Massachusetts come to the realization that a divorce is necessary, the last thing either party wants is a time-consuming court process, especially if one or both spouses is looking to remarry. In Massachusetts, the law requires certain waiting periods to be observed, depending on whether the divorce is contested or uncontested.
The Service members Civil Relief Act provides for a mandatory stay of at least ninety days upon a proper request by a qualifying servicemember "the court may on its own motion and shall, upon application by the servicemember, stay the action for a period of not less than 90 days, if certain conditions are met.
If you're facing a change in your marriage and family life, you're not alone in Massachusetts. The best thing you can do is to find out what your options are, and learn how to protect yourself, your assets, and/or your children. One of the most common questions someone in this situation asks is, "Do I really need to hire an attorney to represent me?"