What happens if we reconcile and want to cancel the divorce?
Emotionally-charged situations often change over time. While the process of a divorce is neither simple nor quick, it can be entered into for a number of reasons that may not stay solid during the proceedings. There are many individuals who go into a divorce feeling sure that they want to bring their marriage to an end, only to have a change of heart as the finalization date gets closer. If you decide that a divorce is not for you, it is possible to cancel your divorce – it is not, however, quite as simple as telling the judge that you’ve changed your mind and that you’d like things to go back to the way they were before.
The Good News
The good news for most who want to cancel their divorce is that you can cancel the process at any point before the divorce is finalized. So long as the judge has not signed the final decree, the entire process can be stopped and your marriage can return to the point where it was before, at least from a legal standpoint. Though there are many steps that need to be taken before the cancellation can occur, you can stop the process at any point along the way.
As with most legal matters, stopping a divorce is a matter of getting the right paperwork to the right person. If you want to cancel your divorce after you have reconciled, you’ll need to visit the court where your divorce is being heard and speak to the clerk. The clerk will direct you to the correct forms that you’ll need to fill out in order to stop the process. You may be able to get these forms online, but it’s recommended that you speak to a clerk to ensure that you’re doing everything correctly.
Once you have the paperwork done and filed, you may actually have to serve your spouse with the papers. This is not true in every jurisdiction, but it is an important part of the process in some places. This not only ensures that both parties are actually willing to cancel the divorce, but it ensures that neither party is able to make the decision on his or her own. Once you have the paperwork signed and it is received by all of the relevant parties, your divorce will be canceled and the entire process will essentially be brought to an end.
While the steps above will generally resolve the divorce process for most couples that choose to reconcile, there are theoretically other ways to end the process. If the grounds for divorce are abandonment, for example, one could (at least in theory) void those grounds by moving back in with one’s spouse or by ending the constructive abandonment as specified by law. While doing the paperwork is certainly much safer and makes the process of ending the divorce much easier from a legal standpoint, voiding the grounds can do effectively the same thing.
It is, however, important to note that ending the divorce proceedings can have an impact on one’s future. While ending the divorce proceedings will certainly not stop you from getting divorced in the future, it can make it more difficult to get divorced based on certain grounds. If you were getting divorced on the grounds of abandonment, for example, the year-long time period would reset once your divorce was canceled. Likewise, waiting out the legal separation period or even making it through the six months of irreparable breakdown would reset if the court saw that your relationship had recovered enough for a divorce petition to be withdrawn.
If you choose to reconcile during your divorce proceedings, you can cancel the process at any point before the divorce is finalized. Doing so is as easy as filing the right paperwork, but you should know that doing so can make getting divorced in the future slightly more difficult in some cases. No matter what your decision, it’s wise to consult with your attorney if you wish to cancel the divorce and to make sure that you’re getting all the information you need. While getting the paperwork filed is relatively easy you must remember that you’re doing so on a schedule and that failure to cancel the divorce before finalization can be quite problematic for your relationship.