Acknowledgement vs. served papers

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Acknowledgement vs. served papers

My wife’s attorney sent papers in the mail and asked that I sign them as acknowledged only. I told her I wasn’t but then changed my mind.  She called them and is trying to get me served asap. I have sent in the papers and they won’t get to the law office till monday. If I go home this weekend and get served will it automatically be a contested divorce because I got served before they received the papers?  She found out that she is not going to get all she wants legally and is mad.  Should I go home or hide till they get papers?

Asked on June 6, 2009 under Family Law, Georgia

Answers:

Joanna Mitchell / Joanna Mitchell & Associates, P.A.

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

There really is no difference between accepting service or acknowledging service vs. being formally served by a process server or sheriff, except for the fact that one is formally served on you by someone who is authorized to do so. If you have already accepted service by signing an acknowledgement of receipt of the papers, then getting served by a process server will have no impact. You will still have 20 days to respond to the papers that you have acknowledged either agreeing to the terms or disagreeing (you still must file an Answer even if you have acknowledged receipt of the papers). What makes a divorce "contested" vs. "uncontested" is whether there are any issues in dispute regarding child support, visitation, division of assets and liabilities, etc. If all issues are agreed upon and there are no issues in dispute, then it is an "uncontested" divorce. If there is even one issue in dispute and not agreed upon between the parties, it is a "contested" divorce. And, a divorce can start out "Contested" but then the parties later agree to compromise, and then it becomes an "uncontested" divorce.

Joanna M. Mitchell / Mitchell & Associates, PA

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

There really is no difference between accepting service or acknowledging service vs. being formally served by a process server or sheriff, except for the fact that one is formally served on you by someone who is authorized to do so. If you have already accepted service by signing an acknowledgement of receipt of the papers, then getting served by a process server will have no impact. You will still have 20 days to respond to the papers that you have acknowledged either agreeing to the terms or disagreeing (you still must file an Answer even if you have acknowledged receipt of the papers). What makes a divorce "contested" vs. "uncontested" is whether there are any issues in dispute regarding child support, visitation, division of assets and liabilities, etc. If all issues are agreed upon and there are no issues in dispute, then it is an "uncontested" divorce. If there is even one issue in dispute and not agreed upon between the parties, it is a "contested" divorce. And, a divorce can start out "Contested" but then the parties later agree to compromise, and then it becomes an "uncontested" divorce.


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