In some cases, it will be easier for the Self-Help Center / Family Law Facilitator to help you finalize your case if you request a Default Hearing. The court will not mail to other party any information about the date of the default hearing, so only you will be present at the hearing. At the default hearing the judge will make orders regarding all the issues in your case including the status of your marriage, child custody visitation, child and spousal support and division of assets and debts. If you have questions about any of these issues you should contact an attorney or the Self-Help Center / Family Law Facilitator. This instruction sheet will review the procedure and forms necessary to obtain a default hearing and default judgment.
Before following these instructions you must satisfy the following:
- You started a divorce, legal separation or annulment case by properly filing legal papers with the Court;
- The other party was served with a copy of your legal papers and financial disclosure information;
- You completed the Parenting Class if you have minor children of the marriage - (805) 781-5423;
- 30 days have passed from the date of service and the other party has not filed an FL-120 Response;
- The other party is not an active duty military person;
- You are only requesting those items listed on the FL-100 Petition.
You may view instructions and sample forms. The samples are for general information only; they are not intended to resolve the specific issues in your case. If you have any questions you should consult a family law lawyer.
1. Review FL-115 & FL-100
A Default Judgment may be granted only if the other party was properly given the Divorce and Financial Disclosure documents. Review the filed copy of your FL-115 Proof of Service to make sure that it was completed correctly.
Review your filed copy of the FL-100 Petition; only those requests may appear on a Default Judgment. If you want to obtain orders not mentioned in your FL-100 Petition you will need to go back and file an Amended FL-100 Petition and other papers.
2. Forms Needed
Complete the following forms to request a default hearing. The originals should be two-hole punched at the top. If you want the Self-Help Center to review your forms, visit their office before you make any copies.
You must complete the following forms:
- CVDF10 Request for Default Setting
- FL-141 Declaration Regarding Service of Declaration of Disclosure
- FL-165 Request to Enter Default
- 1 legal-sized envelope addressed to you with postage (for clerk to mail you hearing date)
- 1 legal-sized envelope addressed to the other party with postage
You may also need to complete the following additional forms:
- ⇒ FL-142 Schedule of Assets and Debts (only if there are changes)
- ⇒ FL-150 Income and Expense Declaration (only if there are changes)
- ⇒ FL-160 Community Property Declaration (only if FL-100 lists items)
- ⇒ FL-160 Separate Property Declaration (only if FL-100 lists items)
- ⇒ FLF-2 Declaration and Order Regarding Parenting Class (only if there are minor children and Respondent did not complete the class)
- ⇒ FL-335 Proof of Service by Mail (only if FL142, FL-150, FL-160 or FLF-2 are completed)
- FL-160 Property Declarations (Separate and Community) must be completed and filed with the Court, if you listed assets or debts on your FL-100 Petition. This will be your proposal of how community property items should be divided equally and how separate property should be assigned. All the community property assets and debts should appear on one FL-160 Property Declaration and all the separate property assets and debts should appear on another FL-160 Property Declaration.
3. Mail Papers to Other Party
If you completed the FLF-2, FL-142, FL-150, or FL-160, copies of these documents must also be mailed to the other party by someone other that you who is 18 years or older.The person who mails these documents must complete and sign the FL-335 Proof of Service by Mail.
4. File Papers and Envelopes
File with the Court Clerk all completed original documents listed above in Steps 2 & 3 (except FL-142) including self-addressed stamped envelopes. The Court Clerk will also need additional copies of the following completed documents.
- CVDF10 Request for Default Setting (original plus one copy)
- FL-165 Request to Enter Default (original plus one copy)
The Court Clerk will either give you a date and time for your default hearing or will mail this information to you in the envelope you provide.
5. Attend Your Hearing
Go to court on the day of your hearing. Review the Default Hearing Checklist to prepare for your hearing. At the hearing the judge will make orders regarding all the issues in your case including the status of your marriage, child custody visitation, child and spousal support and division of assets and debts.
6. Get Minute Order
The minute order is the Clerk’s notes of what the judge ordered on the day of your hearing. About 10 days after your hearing, the minute order may be ready for you to purchase a copy from the Court Clerk’s Office. The minute order is usually 1 or 2 pages and each page will cost .50 cents.
7. Prepare Judgment
To finish your case, you must complete the following forms and 2-hole punch the originals at the top. If you want the Self-Help Center / Family Law Facilitator to review your forms, then don’t make copies until the completed originals are reviewed.
- 1 manila envelope addressed to you with postage
- 1 legal-sized envelope addressed to the other party with postage
- FL-190 Notice of Entry of Judgment
FL-180 Judgment & staple the forms below that mirror the orders listed in your Minute Order:
- ⇒ FL-341 Child Custody & Visitation Attachment
- ⇒ FL-341(A) Supervised Visitation Attachment
- ⇒ FL-341(B) Child Abduction Attachment
- ⇒ FL-341(C) Children’s Holiday Schedule Attachment
- ⇒ FL-341(E) Joint Legal Custody Attachment
- ⇒ FL-342 Child Support Attachment (w/DissoMaster)
- ⇒ FL-192 Notices Re: Child Support
- ⇒ Copy of Existing DCSS Child Support Order
- ⇒ FL-343 Spousal, Partner or Family Support Order Attachment
- ⇒ FL-345 Property Orders Attachment
- ⇒ FL-348 Pension Benefits
- ⇒ DCSS signature needed if DCSS case is filed (go to 1200 Monterey St., San Luis Obispo before filing judgment with the court)
- ⇒ FL-191 Child Support Case Registry (only if there are minor children)
- ⇒ FL-195 Income Withholding for Support (only if child support was ordered)
- ⇒ FL-435 Earnings Assignment Order for Spousal or Partner Support (if only spousal support and not child support is ordered)
8. File Papers
File with the Court Clerk all documents listed above in Step 7 including originals, copies for Court and self-addressed stamped envelopes.
9. Wait for Judgment in Mail
Within 4 weeks of filing the above documents with the Court Clerk, you should receive your final Judgment documents in the mail. You may contact the Court Clerk’s office to obtain the status of your case by calling (805) 781-5706.
10. Mail Papers to Other Party & Their Employer
Once you receive your signed FL-180 Judgment, someone other than you who is 18 years or older should mail a copy to the other party. Also, if child support was ordered and you want the other party’s employer to garnish wages to enforce the child support order, you must have someone other than you who is 18 years or older mail to the employer a copy of the FL-195 Income Withholding for Support. The person who mails the copy of the FL-180 and/or FL-195 must complete the FL-335 Proof of Service by Mail and you must file the original with the Court.