How Long Do I Have to Wait for Divorce Papers?

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“Could you please answer the following question?

[NOTE: Articles and answers on DearEsq., while written and published by lawyers, do not constitute legal advice, and no attorney-client relationship is formed by your reading of this information. You should always consult with an attorney for any legal situations.]

1. What is the time limit for a Judge to put a descision to paper?

I am asking because, back in Feb. 06 we had our divorce trial. On March 9th we went to court for the Equitable Distrubution Hearing, and now some 6 months later we have nothing on paper from the judge. Every time I call his secratary all i get is “it’s on his desk”

I have been representing myself “pro-se” in this action and can’t seem to get anywhere with the court to put the descision to paper.”

In California, Judicial Canon 3 A JUDGE SHALL PERFORM THE DUTIES OF JUDICIAL OFFICE IMPARTIALLY AND DILIGENTLY, Section 8 reads: A judge shall dispose of all judicial matters fairly, promptly, and efficiently.

The Advisory Committee note goes on to say: “The obligation of a judge to dispose of matters promptly and efficiently must not take precedence over the judge’s obligation to dispose of the matters fairly and with patience. A judge should monitor and supervise cases so as to reduce or eliminate dilatory practices, avoidable delays, and unnecessary costs. A judge should encourage and seek to facilitate settlement, but parties should not feel coerced into surrendering the right to have their controversy resolved by the courts.

“Prompt disposition of the court’s business requires a judge to devote adequate time to judicial duties, to be punctual in attending court and expeditious in determining matters under submission, and to require that court officials, litigants, and their lawyers cooperate with the judge to that end.”

In California, under Government Code Section 68210, “No judge of a court of record shall receive his salary unless he shall make and subscribe before an officer entitled to administer oaths, an affidavit stating that no cause before him remains pending and undetermined for 90 days after it has been submitted for decision.” So if your matter has been pending for more than 90 days, and the judge is still getting his/her salary, she may be running afoul of this section.

Finally, you could check the minutes of your case in the file. It is possible that an order has been entered, though no written ruling from the Court is forthcoming. They may be waiting for one or the other of you to submit a recommended order. If you are able to check the file, there may be more information available than you think or have been led to believe.



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Author: House Attorney

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