Response too late?


To clarify; I had to switch attorneys mid stream because of a conflict of interest. That’s why it took so long. My husband is very well connected in the county where I filed. 1. I can’t believe the clerk did not file on the scheduled date. Is collusion possible?
2. he missed the date to file a response … even though there was extra time because of my need to switch attorneys. My understanding is that he defaulted and waived the right to respond. 3. His demand for a jury trial was made 14 days after the last pleading, and the day after the divorce was scheduled to be recorded --which acccording to my understanding of the law is too late to demand a jury trial. Is NC just lax about these timing rules of civil procedure? My husband is no stranger to the court house. Is it possible he just went in at the last minute and asked the clerk to hold this up till he got his response in? Something is just not right here. I am bewildered and appalled and broke.


Dear ithertz:

Greetings. Ask your attorney to read through Rule 38 of the North Carolina Rules of Civil Procedure which dictates the timing allowed to file your request for trial by jury. If you fail to request a trial by jury on any issues within the prescribed time the right to a jury trial is waived, unless it is an action where the right cannot be waived. Let us know how it turns out for you. Best of luck.

Janet L. Fritts
Attorney with Rosen Divorce
4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 500
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607

The response posted above is based upon the limited factual information made available and is not intended as a full and complete response to the question. The only reliable manner to obtain complete and adequate legal advice is to consult with an attorney, fully explain your situation, and allow the attorney sufficient opportunity to research the applicable law and facts required to render an accurate opinion. The basic information provided above is intended as a public service but a full discussion with an attorney should be undertaken before taking any action.


My husband is crazy. I left him well over a year ago. I moved to another part of the state, but still went to his home/office on rare occasions to do his books for his business. I stayed there over several weekends. I took nothing and want nothing from him – just my life back! He only married me so he could have a free accountant. Now he has to pay me. I have very little money. When I left, I rented a room for a while – then moved in with a guy I met and his wife. My husband kept telling me he was going to file for divorce and pay for it, but he never did it. I finally scraped the money together for a lawyer and filed myself. There are no kids and I am not asking for any property or any part of his business. I just want OUT!!!
He was served with the papers and didn’t respond within 30 days. Then my lawyer didn’t file right away – but when he did, the divorce was calendared to be recorded and my husband was served with the notice. Now my lawyer tells me that the clerk neglected to record it and my husband sent in a demand for a jury trial contesting only the date of separation. He sent this a day after the divorce was scheduled to be final. This was two weeks after he was served with the last pleading and almost 80 days after I first served him. My lawyer just says it’s not her fault that the clerk didn’t record it. Now this is going to cost a fortune. He’s also asking me to pay his attorney fees. Can he demand a jury trial to decide a date when there’s no money or property involved? Why is he allowed to file anything at this late date? He’s still just trying to control me and make me suffer.