How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask LawTalk Your Own Question

LawTalk
LawTalk, Attorney and Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27999
Experience:  30 years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
15277592
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
LawTalk is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I have been separated for about 13 plus years and my wife at

Resolved Question:

I have been separated for about 13 plus years and my wife at that time had filed a dissolution of marriage on January 18, 1999 but I could not be found and served; Then I filed a dissolution of marriage on April 21, 2000 and she could not be served with the papers to finalize the dissolution, because to the best of my knowledge I believe she has left the country and is no where in the United States. The question is: Both you and her have filed for the dissolution, however; The Dissolution of marriage was not made final how do I go about getting this finalized after 13 plus years of Separation?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  LawTalk replied 2 years ago.
Good morning,

I'm sorry to hear of the situation.

Almost certainly, the divorce action she filed 13 years ago has been dismissed by the court for failure to prosecute the action.

It is a relatively simple matter to finalize your divorce---even if you can not find her. You must file a divorce proceeding, and then, in good faith, attempt to locate her. When you are unable to do so, you will file a morion with the court to publish the summons. The motion will state the steps you took to try and locate her, it will assert that you have been unsuccessful and you want the court to order that you may publish the summons in a local newspaper.

When the court approves the motion, you will take the order and the summons to the local newspaper office and they will---for a fee--publish the summons once each week for a month and then 30 days after the last publication date the summons is deemed served and you may thereafter take a default against your spouse and the court will award you the divorce.

You can probably have a local attorney do this for you quite inexpensively---as all that will be needed is the divorce complaint and the motion. She won't be answering the complaint and you will get a default divorce decree.

I hope you found my answer informative, even if the law is not necessarily in your favor. I wish you the best in 2012.

Doug
LawTalk, Attorney and Counselor at Law
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27999
Experience: 30 years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
LawTalk and 7 other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
You must file a divorce proceeding, and then, in good faith, attempt to locate her. When you are unable to do so, you will file a morion with the court to publish the summons. - WHAT'S A morion with the court to publish the summons?
Expert:  LawTalk replied 2 years ago.
A motion is a Pleading---a document that you---or preferably your attorney--- prepares and files with the court clerk.

This particular Pleading tells the court that you can not locate your spouse to serve her with the divorce lawsuit. The law will forgive your inability to find her and allow you to serve the summons in a different manner---by having it posted in a local newspaper for all to read---including your spouse. Even if she doesn't see it in the paper, you will then have served the lawsuit, and you will be able to get your divorce decree.

I hope you found my answer informative, even if the law is not necessarily in your favor. I wish you the best in 2012.

Doug

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it. Lee Michigan
< Last | Next >
  • Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it. Lee Michigan
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Ely

    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    8085
    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RA/ratioscripta/2012-6-13_2955_foto3.64x64.jpg Ely's Avatar

    Ely

    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    8085
    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/LA/LawTalk/2012-6-6_17379_LawTalk.64x64.JPG LawTalk's Avatar

    LawTalk

    Attorney and Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    6424
    27+ years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/FL/FLAandNYLawyer/2012-1-27_14349_3Fotolia25855429M.64x64.jpg FiveStarLaw's Avatar

    FiveStarLaw

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    6336
    25 years of experience helping people like you.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/dkaplun/2009-05-17_173121_headshot_1_2.jpg Dimitry K., Esq.'s Avatar

    Dimitry K., Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    5987
    I provide family and divorce law advice to my clients in my firm.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MU/multistatelaw/2011-11-27_173951_Tinaglamourshotworkglow102011.64x64.jpg Tina's Avatar

    Tina

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    5773
    JD, 15 years legal experience including family law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BrianTMayer/2010-01-06_200119_BM.jpg Brandon M.'s Avatar

    Brandon M.

    Family Law Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    3810
    Attorney experienced in all aspects of family law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/TU/TUSA/2012-6-6_55219_test.64x64.png Thoreau (T-USA)'s Avatar

    Thoreau (T-USA)

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    2634
    Attorney
 
 
 
Chat Now With A Family Lawyer
LawTalk
LawTalk
Attorney at Law
7071 Satisfied Customers
30 years legal experience. I remain current in Family Law through regular continuing education.