What tactics should I use to get a divorce if I do not know where my husband is? 5 Answers as of June 19, 2015

I am aiming to represent myself in a divorce. My husband has been absent for about 6 years, and we have no children or joint property. He is (to my knowledge) a drifter. I have no address for him or reasonable way to find out. Internet searches show his last address as the one we shared years ago, or his mother's in the same town. I plan to seek service by publication - and this is my question.

Is it to my benefit that I have made contact thru email and a no-name cell which he gave me the number to? I have record of my informing him of my intentions, and his subsequent refusal to give me his address. On different occasions, he has said he is in several different states, that he is moving, he will get back to me.

This has been going on for over a year. Would this hinder my ability to publish notice in the paper in the town of his last known address? Or would it prove due diligence in trying to locate him? Should I stick to the black and white facts of last known residence? What other proof do I need to satisfy a judge? There is no way I can afford a PI, and as I said he is a drifter and would likely leave town to dodge service if I did find his location. The IRS denied my request for his last filing address, though I am pretty sure he has not filed since he left me - I just paid more than $2000 over the last few years for his debt owing from the last year we filed together. He is just jerking me around at this point and I feel I need to dissolve this farce of a marriage as soon as possible to avoid further damage to my finances, as well as my sanity. Thank you.

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James T. Weiner & Associates, P.C.
James T. Weiner & Associates, P.C. | James T. Weiner
This will be easier if you have an attorney to interpret the court rules for you Look very closely at the Michigan Court Rules about "alternate service". Initially use a process server to attempt to serve him at his mom's home.. then you must file a motion for alternate service and with it an affidavit of attempted service in the appropriate time saying you have attempted to locate him via address searches and have attempted to contact him by telephone and notify him of the potential of a divorce but he will not give you an address to serve him A court will most likely grant you a divorce by service of process by publication in the county of his last know address (his mom's) and by posting on the bulletin board in the courthouse. Your divorce default judgment should be simple awarding each party the assets in their possession.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 6/19/2015
Law Office of Robert E McCall | Robert McCall
Too many variables to give plain answer, you need to see a local attorney. DO NOT attempt Service by Publication on your own, there any many pitfalls in that statute.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 6/19/2015
Law Offices of Robert Burns
Law Offices of Robert Burns | Robert Burns
I'm not answering your questions. You don't know what's needed. Just hire an investigator to do a perfunctory search for purposes of substantiating or avoiding the need for service by publication. It will cost about $50.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 6/18/2015
S. Joseph Schramm | Joseph Schramm
You will need to present a motion, with an attached divorce complaint that you propose to file, asking for a court order to serve the defendant by publication. In your motion you will have to detail the efforts you have made to locate him and the attempts you have made so far should help you obtain the order as they tend to show that he is deliberately concealing his whereabouts.
Answer Applies to: Pennsylvania
Replied: 6/18/2015
Richard B. Jacobson & Associates, LLC | Richard B. Jacobson
Try checking with the Clerk of Courts in your county. And go to the public library and check your state statutes on service by publication. Here in Wisconsin publication is generally in a state-wide newspaper, and in the newspaper of widest circulation in the area where he was last known to reside. The Clerk will likely answer your question with reference to the local rules you need to follow.
Answer Applies to: Wisconsin
Replied: 6/18/2015
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