My name is***** and I will be helping you with your question today. This is for informational purposes only and does not establish an attorney client relationship.
When serving an individual as done in a family court case, the process server must deliver the summons and complaint to the defendant personally. That means the summons and complaint must be placed in the defendant’s hands. Leaving it under the mat or jammed in the door is not personal service. Also, it is proper service is the papers are left with a person of “suitable age and discretion” who also resides in the usual place of abode (the home) of the defendant. See statute below:
(d)(1) Individuals. Upon an individual other than a minor under the age of 14 years or an incompetent person, by delivering a copy of the summons and complaint to him personally or by leaving copies thereof at his dwelling house or usual place of abode with some person of suitable age and discretion then residing therein, or by delivering a copy to an agent authorized by appointment or by law to receive service of process.
The service in this case should be goof especially with the affidavit signed that the college student personally handed the divorce petition to you "wife". The following provides a basic overview of how to obtain a "simple divorce" (expedited divorce) in South Carolina. If you do not meet all of the following requirements or you have specific questions about your divorce case, you should speak with an experienced family law attorney in your area. A court or judge can't answer questions about your particular case or legal rights.
In South Carolina, you may file for a simple divorce without the help of a lawyer if you meet the following:
(1) you or your spouse has lived in South Carolina for at least one year prior to filing for your divorce, or you and your spouse both live in South Carolina and have lived there for at least three months before filing for divorce
(2) you are filing on the ground of one year continuous separation without living together at any point during that year
(3) you have no martial property or marital debt, or you have reached an agreement on how to divide the marital property and/or debt, and
(4) you have no children with your spouse and none are expected, or you have minor children together and have reached an agreement about custody, visitation and child support (and the child support agreement meets the minimum requirements set by South Carolina Child Support Guidelines).
The service must be accepted by your spouse though and file this form: http://www.sccourts.org/forms/pdf/SCCA400.03SRL-DIV.pdf which may be difficult considering your problems already. It looks as though you have already made proper service and the simple approach I described may be harder. I would contact an attorney if you haven't already and move forward with the case and consider your wife served.
Please let me know if you have any further questions and please positively rate my answer if satisfied.