Is there a statutes of limitations for completing a Dissolution of Marriage?
Petitioner filed for legal separation in Feb. 1996 listing separation date as December 1995. Marriage date: 1989.
Respondent filed response: Request for Dissolution of Marriage in March 1996.
Due to many factor and issues divorce was not completed right away. In June 2002 Respondent (still living apart & separated) filed a Bifurcation request. This request was granted.
Petitioner filed a Motion to have divorce vacated on grounds that "statutes of Limitations" had occured, since original filing was done in 1996. Note: Between 1996 and 1998 Petitioner filed two bankruptcy filings. Therefore Respondent was told that divorce proceedings were an automatic stay and the clock stops ticking. In July 2002 Judge reversed original Bifurcation/Divorce status dated: June 2002.
Respondent was planning to re-marry and the morning of schduled wedding day, was notified that Bifurcation/Divorce dated June 2002 had been vacated, reason: "statutes of limitations". So all I could do was a "Spitual" cermony as over 200 guest had arrived and a great deal of expense had been incurred.
In late July Respondent filed a "Motion to Reconsider". In September 2002 Respondent received "Dissolution of Marriage" status only. Respondent checked with his attorney the validity of document and was told it was valid.
In November 2002 Respondent and girlfriend went to Court house to marry and took Dissolution of Marriage document with them to again verify validity of document and was told by clerk's office document was vaild. Thus a marriage cermony took place at the County Clerks office.
Then, ONE YEAR later in October 2003 Respondent was notifed that a "clerical error" had occured and the Dissolution of Marriage dated: September 2002 was vacated.
Petitioner tried to have Respondent arrested for bigmy. Nothing happen, as police were told Respondent side of story and decided there was no reason to pursue any action.
Out of frustration with the courts and with Petitioners tactics. Respondent decided to take control of situation and filed his own petition for divorce in October 2003 thus now becoming the "Petitioner". Bifurcation of marital status was finally granted in July 2004. However, not realizing why ex-spouse wanted divorce vacated in the first place, would soon become clear.
Ex-spouse would now state a "new" separation date of May 2002, however Petitioner maintains original separation date of December 1995. Petitioner been with current girlfriend/wife since Nov.1998. Ex-spouse reasons to delay and/or vacate original divorce date is now clear: (1) to claim community property interest in real estate that Petitioner purchased in Oct. 1999 as joint tenants with then girlfriend, now wife. This was a post-separation purchase. (2) now requesting spousal surport, as spousal surport was waived forever by both Petitioner and Respondent in original divorce case.
Ex-spouse claims she gave ex-husband $10,000.00 towards the down payment on property. To date no proof provided. As there is no truth to her claim.This case has been going on for a total of almost 10 years. Proof of funds used to purchase property have been given to attorney's. Ex-spouse has not cooperated with the discovery process. Ex-spouse filed a Lis pendens against property and never notifed me. It was during a recent real estate transaction, that I was told by title company that a Lis pendens had been recorded. I believe I will prevail. This case will go to trial shortly.
After all this...I want to know if I have any recourse? Mistakes were done by the court system and by my previous attorney. If there is "No statutes of limitations" can I request "Nunc pro tunc" my original divorce date of "June 2002"? Thus all stipulations and/or motions from original divorce proceedings would remain in effect. After all it was the courts errors that made me a so-called "bigmist", along with the vengence and malice of an ex-wife.
I have incurred several thousands of dollars in legal expense responding to ex-spouse frivolous claims and filing of frivolous motions, as ex-spouse is acting as "Pro Per".
Any advice would greatly be appreciated.