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The Defendant's Response

After the Defendant (the spouse, husband or wife) has been served the papers, the Defendant is given time to respond.

  • If the Defendant was served somewhere in New York State, then the Defendant has 20 days to respond.
  • If the Defendant and was served outside of New York State then the Defendant has 30 days to respond.

The Defendant will respond in one of the following ways:

If the Defendant... then...
signs and returns the Affidavit of Defendant This is an uncontested divorce. You can file the rest of papers to put your case on the court calendar.
files a Notice of Appearance This is a contested divorce and you may need a lawyer to help you with your case.
doesn't return the Affidavit of Defendant or file a Notice of Appearance This is an uncontested divorce and the Defendant has "defaulted." You can file the rest of papers to put your case on the court calendar.

 

Next Step

Depending on how the Defendant responds, your case may be ready for the Supreme Court.

Learn more about Calendaring an Uncontested Divorce Case.

** This is a general information and may not apply to the county where you're filing your uncontested divorce case. Contact the Supreme Court in your county for more information.

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