My husband served divorce papers on grounds of adultery and I have not responded to the interrogatories within the 30 day timeframe. They have given me 6 additional days to respond. I do not agree with some of the questions listed, so I am hesitant to respond. I do not have an attorney. What should I do?
You need a lawyer TODAY (not soon) and you screwed up badly. You are over your head and in trouble. This will cost you money because of your clear errors.
Discovery is not optional and it doesn't matter if you "agree" with the questions. Absent a question violating the law, for which you file a motion (on time, not now), you MUST answer. The failure to answer likely means you will be held in contempt. The possible penalties are that you may have to pay his lawyer's fees, your answer and any counterclaim can be struck, you can be jailed, and so on. And you also likely don't even know the grounds in your case. It is almost 100% certain your papers actually claim ground 13 (irr. broken) as well as adultery, and while the adultery may cost you alimony and other relief, the divorce likely will be granted on the other ground.
Not all your mistakes likely can be fixed by counsel. Some may be fixable and your are just days from a problem getting worse. BTW, improper or incomplete answers may be almost as bad as no answers.
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You need to retain an attorney to represent you TODAY! You could be sanctioned by the court and be required to pay the other side attorney fees.
You should hire a lawyer to help you answer the questions. You may be waiving valid objections if you do not answer the questions. Good luck!
I agree with my colleagues. You need an attorney asap. You have 30 days to respond to discovery. During that 30 days, there are grounds on which you may be able to object to some of the questions or requests (the question is irrelevent, overly burdensome, involves privileged information, etc.). However, if you fail to timely respond, you waive those objections and must answer all questions. Note, if you are being sued for divorce, there may be some pretty uncomfortable questions which are not objectionable. If you fail to respond to the interrogatories, your husband's attorney will write a letter demanding responses (you may have already received that). The next step will be to file a motion to compel discovery, and have a hearing on the motion. The judge will order you to comply. If you still fail to respond, there will likely be a motion for contempt and the judge can actually incarcerate you until you comply and will probably order you to pay the other attorney's fees for the motions and hearings. Don't dig yourself any deeper into this hole. Call an attorney today.
You need to hire an attorney. If you do not respond in time the opposing attorney is required to make efforts to communicate with you to get you to respond. This usually means one letter and an extension. If you don't meet that extension they will file a Motion to Compel Discovery, asking the court to order you to produce responses. They'll likely order you to pay the moving party's attorney's fees as well as order you to produce the documents.
It doesn't matter if you agree with the questions. You have to answer them truthfully. Talk to an attorney today about representing you in this matter. Extensions are freely granted between attorneys, particularly when an attorney gets into a case with a deadline looming.
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Just to add to the responses - GET A LAWYER!!!
You do not get to disagree with the questions - you get to and have to answer them. How you answer them matters!
Get an attorney quickly.
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