What Should You Do When the Court Delays Issuing a Decision in Your Divorce?

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Your attorney presented legal arguments to the court and the judge stated that he or she will render a decision within a certain period of time. Unfortunately, that date comes and goes, and you’re still waiting. What can you do in this situation to expedite the resolution of your case? Unfortunately, your options are, in fact, limited when the court is delayed in issuing a decision but there are a few steps you can take that may help. 

Be patient in waiting for a court decision in your divorce

The court has hundreds of cases at different stages that it must handle. While it tries to provide an estimate of when a decision will be made, other or new cases may need to take precedence delaying your matter. 

Follow up with the court at certain intervals if a decision is delayed

A good rule of thumb is to give the court an extra 3-4 weeks after the date the decision was supposed to be rendered before following up. At that point, you can politely contact the court clerk for an update on the status of the case. 

If you are given a new date and that too passes, again wait 3-4 weeks past the date before contacting the court clerk for another update.

Don’t be demanding, disrespectful, or annoyed with the court clerk or judge

When dealing with the clerk or judge, it’s important to request an update rather than demand information about your case. As noted above, the court system is overburdened and no one is deliberately delaying your case, so being considerate of everyone’s efforts to handle the workload is the best way for you to proceed. 

Consider moving your case to another court if possible

In some instances, you may be able to move your case to another court. For example, the Integrated Domestic Violence (IDV) Part is meant for cases where a divorce is pending in Supreme Court but there is an order of protection in Criminal Court. If you are in this situation, you can ask the clerk to consolidate the 2 matters in the IDV Part. The new judge will then decide your case and you will no longer have to wait for the first judge to render his or her decision. With that said, it’s important to note that issues which have already been decided in the case will not be revisited unless you timely file a motion to re-argue or renew the decision already rendered by the first court.

Resolve divorce disputes on your own

It is generally best for you and your spouse to try to settle as many issues as possible on your own. The fewer matters you need to take to a judge, the less likely you will experience court delays and the faster your case will be resolved.

Divorce can be a time-consuming process. If you are considering divorce, contact us for a consultation to learn how we can help you achieve a positive and efficient outcome in your case.

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