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Tina, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 33167
Experience:  JD, 17 years legal experience including family law
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I am the petitioner in a CA divorce. My wife is an unmedicated

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I am the petitioner in a CA divorce. My wife is an unmedicated bipolar and I don't know her location, although she has been served with the initial paperwork and the FL 115 has been filed.

I have power of attorney for my wife and am unsure of how, or if I can use it to complete the divorce with her missing.

Hello and welcome.

My name is XXXXX XXXXX my goal is to provide you with excellent service today. I am sorry to hear of your difficult situation. Before I can give you an accurate answer to your question, please provide the following additional information:

How long has it been since you filed the petition?

I look forward to assisting you as soon as I have received this information. Thank you.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The petition was filed on May 16th, my wife was served on May 21st, and the FL 115 was filed on June 3rd

I see. Thank you for clarifying that, Eric.

There is typically a 6 month waiting period in California before you may obtain a divorce. During this waiting period, your wife may resurface. If she does not, then you can normally set the case for a hearing and if she does not appear, you can seek a default judgment from the court.

An agent acting with POA authority for a principal has a fiduciary obligation to act in the principal's best interests. Since you are an opposing party in this action, it would not typically be appropriate for you to sign any legal documents for your wife as her POA. If you did and the court accepted the documents, the judgment could be set aside by her at a later date and she could pursue damages against you for breaching your fiduciary obligations to her, so you should not typically sign any documents in this case for her.

Instead, if you pursue a default judgment, it should be granted by the court after the waiting period. Any pleadings should be sent to her at her last known address. The most difficult part is often having the opposing party personally served, which it appears you have already achieved. Since she has notice of the suit, if she choses not to oppose it, you should be able to obtain a default judgment in the case.

I hope this helps clarify the situation for you. Please remember to rate my service once you have all the information you need so I will be compensated for my time from the deposit you posted with this website. If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond. Thank you!


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