If you are served divorce papers and don't file a response in the state of California, your divorce will automatically go into a default. Normally, there is a time frame in which the court waits for a response. When you receive your divorce papers by mail, chances are that there will be a due date on the papers. This will determine the last day that you can file a response before the divorce will default.
If you allow the divorce to default, then you are giving up your right to have any say in the divorce or legal separation, and essentially saying that you will comply to all the terms in the papers that you were served. If you think that this is the best option, you may want to make sure to read the divorce papers first. There may be premises within the pages that you would not want to go through.
For example, you spouse may have filed for sole custody of the children and a massive amount of your shared property. Failing to respond means that you are allowing your spouse to get away with these seemingly unfair choices. You can also respond by getting a form notarized that says that you agree with your spouse/partner's terms for the divorce if you would like to have some say but do not want to change the terms of the divorce.
Chances are that you will want to battle the terms that your spouse has set forth. This is when it is necessary to hire a Los Angeles family attorney to assist you in your case. With an aggressive and convincing attorney on your side, you will be able to gather the information necessary and develop a case against your spouse. This may help you to receive the terms that you prefer.