What Should I Do if I’m Served Divorce Papers in Tennessee?

We understand that divorce is a complex and often overwhelming process, and it can feel particularly overwhelming when an individual is first served with divorce papers. That said, After being served these papers, it’s critical that you keep a clear head and take several steps to make the divorce process move along as smoothly as possible. Please continue reading and reach out to our experienced Shelby County, Tennessee divorce lawyer to learn more about what you need to do and how our firm can help.

Steps to Take After Being Served Divorce Papers

Once you’re served divorce papers, you should ensure you take the following steps:

  • Read the divorce papers very carefully. Once you receive these papers, you need to look them over very carefully. They contain critical deadlines and other details regarding your divorce, such as whether your spouse is citing fault grounds. Sometimes, people make the mistake of ignoring these papers or even throwing them away. Understand that your divorce will not go away by doing so. You have to read these papers and respond accordingly and timely. If you simply ignore the divorce papers, the court may even issue a default divorce, which essentially means that the court will grant your spouse the divorce and will likely accept each of their terms, including those involving custody, spousal support, property division, and more.
  • Contact a competent and trustworthy lawyer. The lawyer you choose to represent you throughout the divorce process can make a world of a difference. In fact, the lawyer you choose can be the difference between attaining a favorable settlement and not. Our firm has decades of experience representing clients through each phase of the divorce process, and we can put that experience to work for you. We will help you assess your options, and, from there, formulate an effective strategy and implement it on your behalf.
  • Have a support system in place. Divorce is a stressful and, in many ways, emotionally taxing process. For this reason, it’s paramount that you have a legal support team and an emotional support team as well. This can either be a trusted friend, relative, or even a therapist. Having people you can talk to who won’t repeat what you say to others is a fantastic tool for making any divorce more bearable.

If you have any additional questions about starting the divorce process or you’ve been served divorce papers and need an attorney, give us a call today so we can get working on your case.


If you require strong legal representation for matters of divorce and family law in Memphis or anywhere in Tennessee, contact Rice Law to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced attorneys today.