Unless you hate football, news, and gossip, by now you know that former Miami Dolphin receiver Chad Johnson is refusing to sign divorce papers he was served recently by the recently wedded, soon to be ex wife Evelyn Lozado. As entertaining as the human drama involved in the story (head butt arrest, the subsequent release by the Miami Dolphins, and the fresh ink, that screams “bad decision”, of the tattoo of her face on his leg), the story of the divorce provides an opportunity to examine the process of divorce as it plays out for the world to see.
According to various media reports, Johnson is very adamant that he wants to work things out and stay together. Though a court order forbidding him from making contact with her following the messy domestic violence charge might make it difficult to do so, he is determined to win her back. As previously mentioned, he even went so far as to tattoo Lozado’s face on his leg after she expressed her desire to dissolve the marriage. She on the other hand seems unimpressed and adamant that they have a divorce. Being served with divorce papers can send anyone into a state of confusion and denial. As Chad Johnson is exhibiting, this is not the best state to be making important decisions. That is why we advise contacting and following the legal advice of an experienced divorce attorney immediately. We also advise against frequenting tattoo parlors in this state of mind. So what happens next for Chad?
Unfortunately for the receiver formally known as Ochocinco, there is little he can do to stop a divorce. Potential domestic violence charges aside, “no-fault divorce” laws have been implemented in some way throughout all 50 states. This means a person can exit out of a marriage agreement without claiming fault on either party. Which means one way or another, the divorce is imminent.
At this point, the best course of action for Chad Johnson is to accept defeat and prepare for next weeks opponent. In this case, not so much the New York Jets, but the legal proceedings. Depending on what state the papers are filed in, a recipient of divorce papers could have up to 30 days to respond. This means they only have that much time to find the best possible family lawyer and position themselves in the best place possible for a divorce resolution. This could involve obtaining copies of W2’s and financial statements, closing joint bank accounts and credit cards, and assessing assets and liabilities shared by the couple.