If I am legally married but have been separated for 10 years and want to buy a house, what do I do? 12 Answers as of June 07, 2013

I am trying to buy a house. The title company said my ex has to come to the closing to sign papers. I explained to them I have no contact with him and do not know where he is. They said I need to file with the court that I am unable to locate him. Can you explain the process I need to do?

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Darrell B. Reynolds, P.C. | Darrell B. Reynolds
You need to get a divorce. .
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 6/7/2013
Grace Law Offices of John F Geraghty Jr.
Grace Law Offices of John F Geraghty Jr. | John F. Geraghty, Jr.
This is to have him served by publication and you need to make an affidavit that shows that you have made attempts to locate him.
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 6/5/2013
S. Joseph Schramm | Joseph Schramm
It appears that the title company wants to preclude your estranged husband from making any claim for equitable distribution of property. I am not sure of the advice the title company was giving you regarding the court action. It could be to obtain relief as a Femme Sole Trader, to declare your husband to be legally dead or some other equitable relief.
Answer Applies to: Pennsylvania
Replied: 6/5/2013
Webster & Associates | Anita Webster
Divorce him.In Nevada "the community" continues until the divorce. Accordingly, he is still entitled to 1/2 of everything you have accumulated the last 10 years including the equity in the house you are purchasing.
Answer Applies to: Nevada
Replied: 6/5/2013
Peters Law, PLLC
Peters Law, PLLC | Mark T. Peters, Sr.
You need to divorce him. That means filing for divorce and serve him by publication. I suggest you hire an attorney to get it done promptly. And who knows, maybe he is dead.
Answer Applies to: Idaho
Replied: 6/5/2013
    Peyton and Associates | Barbara Peyton
    The title company is right. You need some kind of court order to allow you to finish your purchase. You will need the help of a lawyer so don't delay.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 6/5/2013
    Morelos Law Firm
    Morelos Law Firm | Andrea Morelos
    Although you are technically separated and having seen him in so long, you are still "married" and he would gain certain legal interests/rights in any new property you purchase EVEN IF he is not listed on the new deed or mortgage. For this reason, the Lender is correct that something more needs to be done, but it is not the case that the only option is that he physically has to attend your closing. When you know where the person is AND they are amicable, you could simply get a separation agreement drawn up, or even a shorter, simpler document called a Free Trader both parties waive any interests in new property either acquires from now until divorce. But if he is not amicable and/or you cant locate him, then you do need to move forward with filing a divorce and it sounds like you will have to serve by publication in the newspaper, which is not typically something you should do without attorney assistance to make sure it is done correctly. If your closing is anytime soon, that will be a problem because it usually takes at least 45-60 days in most counties and longer if you have to do publication. You should consult with an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: North Carolina
    Replied: 6/5/2013
    Hanna Legal, LLC
    Hanna Legal, LLC | Jen Hanna
    You will need to file for divorce or legal separation and make an attempt to locate him. If you cannot locate him, the court may allow you to give notice by publication in the newspaper. I would recommend working with an attorney for this since you'll have to prove to the court that you have made diligent efforts to locate him.
    Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
    Replied: 6/5/2013
    John Russo | John Russo
    Get a divorce.
    Answer Applies to: Rhode Island
    Replied: 6/5/2013
    File for divorce. In Nevada you can file an Affidavit for Service by Publication if you can't locate him. Once the time to answer has passed you default him.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 6/5/2013
    Law Offices of Mark Schondorf
    Law Offices of Mark Schondorf | Mark Schondorf
    You can divorce him and serve him by publication. But if you're buying your own house and only you are on the mortgage, there is no reason that I know of for him to have to be there.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 6/5/2013
    Kunin &Carman | Ishi Kunin
    You need to file for divorce. If you cannot locate him after due diligence, you have to get an order for publication.
    Answer Applies to: Nevada
    Replied: 6/5/2013
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