In New Jersey, if you cannot locate your spouse, the court permits a litigant to try to locate that spouse by way of diligent inquiry. The steps to obtain a divorce by way of publication are:
- File for divorce (use the last known address of your spouse)
- Begin trying to locate your spouse
- You can use a service to conduct a diligent inquiry of or course an attorney
- You must try to locate your spouse by contacting: the Postmaster General, the United States Military, The Motor Vehicle Commission, Department of Corrections, Family and Friends
- Upon conducting a diligent inquiry, you must then file a motion to be permitted to serve the defendant in the newspaper (by publication).
- If the Judge approves, you can then place your summons and complaint in the newspaper that the Judge orders you to use (in Hudson County, it is the Jersey Journal)
- After 35 days, you can then file a request to enter default
- You will then receive a court date and obtain your divorce judgment
While I laid out the steps in filing for divorce and using publication as a means for personal service, many people have difficulty completing this process. Our team has successfully represented individuals that have difficulty in locating their spouse and want a divorce. These case can be time consuming but we can do it. Reach out to our team to discuss how we can move forward in obtaining your divorce judgment.
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