When you wish to divorce a spouse who hasn’t contacted you in years, the first action you can take is to serve a notice. This is necessary when filing any lawsuit as required by the basic notions of fairness to give the other party an opportunity to tell their side of the story. You can serve the notice by having a family member or a neutral third party give the notice or drop a mail off at your spouse’s house.
Service by Publication
When your husband or wife cannot be located, however, the court will allow service by publication. This is usually the last resort when you attempted several times, and still haven’t heard from the other party. The notice may be posted in a local courthouse or in a newspaper of a region where your spouse most likely resides.
Continue with Divorce
At this point, it may not matter whether or not your spouse receives the notice. In Orem, Buhler Thomas Law, P.C. explains that notable divorce attorneys don't discourage continuously filing for divorce, provided that you follow the correct procedures. Once the service by publication has been affected, you can wait for a certain period of time to give the other spouse a chance to respond.
The Court will Decide
When the time period expires, you may need to go to court for formality. The court will then grant the divorce and decide on other matters like child custody. In some states, however, a court may decide on property division and child custody until the other spouse shows up or is found.
Get Legal Help
You may think that as there is no one to contest the divorce, you can file the divorce on your own. This is doable, but it is advisable to hire a divorce attorney. This is to ensure that the court proceedings are followed accordingly. Your attorney will also inform with the certain procedures in your state.
The absence of your spouse should not stop you from divorcing your spouse. And if you follow the correct the procedures, the court may grant you a default judgment for divorce.