This instruction sheet will review the procedure and forms necessary to obtain a default judgment without a hearing in front of a judge.
If you are requesting an annulment, you must request a hearing in front of a judicial officer and you should follow different instructions on how to request a default hearing. Also, in certain cases it may be easier for the Self-Help Center / Family Law Facilitator Office to help you if you follow different instructions and you request a hearing in front of the judge. For example, if you are requesting No or Supervised Visitation, Specific Amount of Spousal Support or Terminating Spousal Support in a 10+ year Marriage or Unequal Division of Property, you may need to schedule a hearing in front of a judge.
Before following these instructions you must satisfy the following:
- You started a divorce or legal separation 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 - http://parenting.familieschange.ca.gov/ (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. View the sample that best applies to your situation. 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.
- Sample #1: Minor Children AND/OR Assets or Debts were listed on the FL-100 Petition.
- Sample #2: No Minor Children AND No Property or Debt were listed on the FL-100 Petition.
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 because 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 and two-hole punch the originals 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:
- FL-141 Declaration Regarding Service of Declaration of Disclosure
- FL-165 Request to Enter Default
- FL-170 Declaration for Default
- 1 manila envelope addressed to you with postage
- 2 legal-sized envelopes addressed to the other party with postage
- FL-190 Notice of Entry of Judgment
- FL-180 Judgment & staple the forms below that mirror your FL-100 Petition:
- ⇒ FL-341 Child Custody & Visitation 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-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-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)
- ⇒ FL-335 Proof of Service by Mail (only if completing FL-142, FL-150 or FL-160)
- ⇒ FLF-2 Declaration and Order Regarding Parenting Class (only if there are minor children and Respondent did not complete the class)
- ⇒ FL-191 Child Support Case Registry (only if there are minor children)
- ⇒ FL-195 Income Withholding for Support (only if child support is requested on FL-342)
- 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
Someone other than you who is 18 years or older must mail to the other party a copy of the completed FLF-1. In addition, 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 documents listed above in Steps 2 & 3 (except FL-142) including originals, copies for Court and self-addressed stamped envelopes.
The Court will need all originals listed in Steps 2 &3 plus additional copies of the following documents:
- FL-165 Request to Enter Default (plus 1 copy)
- FL-190 Notice of Entry of Judgment (plus 2 copies)
- FL-180 Judgment & Attachments stapled (plus 3 copies)
- FL-195 Income Withholding for Support (plus 3 copies)
5. 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.
6. Mail Papers to Other Party & 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.