For the court to hear the case, your spouse must be provided with copies of the summons, petition, confidential petition addendum, and proposed parenting plan. An Affidavit of Service or Admission of Service must be filed with the Clerk of Circuit Court.
3 Ways to Serve Your Spouse
Admission of Service A legal adult delivers the court documents. The served spouse either signs and dates the Admission of Service paper or refuses. If refused, another form of service must occur.
Service by the Sheriff's Department or Process Server For a fee, a Sheriff or professional process server can serve your spouse. After, they'll file the proof or service with the court.
Publication If you have exhausted all efforts to locate the opposing party, the court will accept service by publication. There are strict requirements for serving by publication.
If you were served divorce papers, you have 20 days to respond with an "answer." Your answer must include verification, denial/admissions, affirmative defenses, any counterclaims, and requests for relief. Wisconsin Statute 801.095 (1) explains:
The court may grant judgment against you for the award of money or other legal action requested in the complaint, and you may lose your right to object to anything that is or may be incorrect in the complaint. A judgment may be enforced as provided by law.
Decide if you or your spouse believe a formal temporary order is necessary. If the situation changes before the final hearing, either spouse may seek a temporary order.