I received a notice that I am due in court next week, but I live on the other side of the country and can’t possibly afford to fly and take time off work for a hearing.
How can I protect myself so that my ex-wife is not granted everything she wants at a hearing that is almost impossible for me to attend?
Based on the information provided, it seems that your child is in California with her mother. Since the original filing was in California and the child resides in California, it would seem that California is the child’s home state and any filings regarding issues related to the child must be filed in the state of California.
Depending on what was filed by the child’s mother in California and the technology available to the court where the filing was made, you may be able to file a request to attend the hearing by telephone. Otherwise, you could file a Motion to Continue the hearing and a request that the hearing be held at a later date.
You may also request that a California attorney, such as an attorney from Cordell & Cordell, attend the hearing on your behalf and you will be available, if the court permits, by telephone.
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The attorney would also be able to advise you whether a responsive pleading is necessary to what was filed by the child’s mother. You will need to either be present at the hearing, have an attorney appear on your behalf, or request that the hearing be held on a later date.
Failing to respond or appear after having received notice of a hearing could result in the judge issuing an order granting the opposing party’s requests or in the court ordering sanctions against you for your failure to appear or respond.
Typically, filings are permitted by certified mail, regular mail, or sometimes by fax. You should contact the specific court to determine what they require of filings in their court.
Remember, I am unable to provide you with anything more than divorce tips for men, so please consult with a divorce lawyer in your jurisdiction.