How can I get in contact with my ex who I am trying to serve divorce papers?

Anyone who’s been through a divorce where the spouse flat out refused to respond to papers and left the state… how did you get your divorce finalized? I don’t want alimony; I don’t want child support. All I wanted was full legal custody of our child and for him to be kept away from us, and this has been granted in a totally separate case. It’s been 11 months since I filed, and it’s been ten since we’ve seen or heard from him. He won’t respond. My lawyer says nothing can be done until he finishes the papers. I know this is absolutely untrue, but at this point, I truly believe she has not wanted to do anything that way she can continue to bill me for “looking for him”, Messing with paperwork, and having pointless convos on the phone of “what’s next” I was able to find out today on Courtnet that he’s never even been served, sheriff couldn’t find him. She’d told me he was served. I can’t afford to retain another attorney for this. And I did file a complaint with the bar association… I do not qualify for legal aid based on my income. Has anyone gone about doing this on their own? Jefferson co. KY


My now step mom just went to the court house. She was told if her ex didn’t comply everything would b granted to her the way she wanted. Her and my dad have been married for 3 years now

When i asked the courts about mine she said they will put it in the paper for 30 days and if he doesn’t respond i get the divorce. Because i don’t know where he is either

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I don’t know anything about the laws in KY but in NJ I was able to divorce my x without serving him or having him sign a single paper. Ground were that he abandoned me and his kids. I waited about 7ish years to finally do the divorce and we had no assets. I had the kids in my custody and he had no contact because he didn’t want to.

Where I live, you have to go before the judge and get a court order allowing you to post in the paper where your ex resides. They have 30 days to respond. If not, then the divorce process proceeds without them.

Consider consulting with a lawyer.

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Publish it in the papers for 30 days.

In Indiana you go to court and tell Judge you don’t know where spouse is. Judge will have you put ad in paper that your looking for them. Then go back to court in 30 days with copy of ad start date and if spouse doesn’t show up to that court date your automatically divorced and get what ever you want since they are not there to lay claim.


It sounds like you should go behind your lawyers back and consult a different lawyer.


ask your lawyer but in most state all u have to do is post it in a paper


Make sure you have solid proof that you have attempted to contact your spouse publish a divorce notice in paper. File for divorce by default.

You should have an option to go into default court. My dad got his divorce that way, had to attempt and show proof of 3x trying to serve his ex with papers b4 he could do it.

Contact the court. He’s abandoned you therefore you should be granted the divorce and custody.


It depends on the state you live in but in general if the other person dose bot sign then it dose not continue

I’m in Louisiana. I am going through the same thing. I filed divorce papers. After a couple months of it being in the court system and trying to find him I was told I had to hire a curator (a lawyer that would stand in place of my ex and sign the divorce papers) the curator however had to try to find him first. He had to send letter to known addresses of him then he had to put an ad in the paper for several cycles trying to locate him. After all the attempts a motion for trial had to be filed to get a trial date.

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Just go file. If he doesn’t show, it’s on him

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Try to do a trace on him. I once found somebody by using his birthday and his name. I was trying to serve him divorce papers however he had already gotten divorced by doing a notice of publication and going through the process but we had no children

Had a friend get a divorce from her unavailable spouse by running ad in local newspapers in town that he was last known to live Divorce was finalizing 30 days later


My ex husband left state and couldn’t find him I had to publish it in the newspaper an then buy said newspaper cut that publishing out take that and the papers the court gave me an had to certify mail it to where his last known address he would have to sign to receive the piece of mail if he didn’t receive it due to not being there anymore an itd get sent back to me an I just bring it all back to the court house showing it was returned

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I would contact some one in the court system where you live tell them what’s going on and ask them what to do file abandon paperwork

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I don’t know about your state but in Florida you can do a divorce by publication

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In utah after a certain amount of time you can ask the judge to grant divorce without the others signature.

Divorce can be granted by posting an ad in newspaper in many states-


Post the divorce notice in the newspaper, but if he left state then judge can sign off as abandoned, you get custody and whatever else you ask for usually (within reason obv.) And dire your atturny they are fucking you over.

When personal service can not happen … you can publish in a newspaper at his last known address (state or city)


My ex didn’t respond to any of our divorce paperwork either and my lawyer said eventually I could file an ad in a newspaper or something like that after a certain amount of time and then the judgement would be granted because I’d proved I tried to find him. This was 10 years ago though so I can’t quite remember the details.

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Ashley Arney this sounds like something you’re going through? Maybe this can help

I had to hire someone to literally sit outside my exes house so he could be served. It was expensive because he kept dodging them. However, I do know that you can run an ad in his local paper and if he doesn’t respond in a certain amount of time you can show that as proof

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At this point all they have to do is run an ad in the local news paper. If he doesn’t respond in 30 days then the judge will grant you your divorce

If he doesn’t show up to the proceedings then he waves his right to be there. That’s how it happened with my ex-husband he moved to another state and I kept mailing him the paper certified mail so that way there was proof that he received them because he had a sign for them and then he just never showed up and so I want to say it was like two court hearings and the judge finally made a decision that he waved his right to be there to participate in the proceedings and then really I got anything I wanted because he wasn’t there to dispute it I didn’t go for anything outrageous just child support. you can go for alimony child support the whole deal because he’s not there

Veronica there you go girl, try running an ad. It might be cheaper!


Run an add after so long you just need a witness to voice that you can’t find him and a judge should grant it

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In the State of Tennessee if you file for divorce & the other person doesn’t sign, it doesn’t matter. It will go to court in 60 days and be done.

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Talk/see a different lawyer about the situation.

My attorney put an ad in the paper in the last county he lived i

Your lawyer needs to recheck their ethics. I’m not sure of the legal process in your state but I would try certified mail with a different return address. Or maybe he is just avoiding paying anything to anybody.

In my stare you can publish it in the personals section of the paper and if they don’t respond the judge will sign the papers.


Mine went thru in 6 months because he didnt show 2 times

If you know the city he’s in put a ad in that paper and have it run for 30 days asking for him to contact you for a divorce and asking for the public to call with his wareabouts keep receipts showing it ran for 30 days and add your lawyers number, after 30 days you can go to the judge and ask for a divorce without him and they should grant it at least that’s how a few people I know have gotten a quick divorce


Send him a certified letter without any info on it. If you have his address that is. When you have his signature, its the same as being served. Works in Texas that way

Run it in the news paper.

You need to check if it post it in the classified section of the newspaper for so many days and that should be able to count as serving

I found some ppl that knew where he might be so that worked

She lied. She can have a ad ran in the local paper and then a judge will sign after 30days anyhow

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U have to post it in the paper like three times and show proof u attempt to serve him plus try to serve him normal

If you know which county he is residing in you can put a thing in the paper and I think after 30 days, you can show the courts proof and they will finalize it.

Have they done a skip trace I had my ex served in 3 1/2 weeks from the day my attorney hired the PI to the moment I got the signed paperwork from the sheriffs office in PA , I live in GA.

If you cannot find your spouse, you can request permission from the court to publish a notice of the divorce in the newspaper or post a notice in the courthouse. This is called a Motion to Serve by Publication or Posting

My ex husband refused to sign the papers and after so long I was just granted the divorce

I live in Arkansas. We sent him papers to his last known address, even though I knew he wasnt there anymore. Then we ran it in the newspaper. Then went to court and he never showed or replied. I was granted my divorce.

Have you tried the electoral role should have name and address on there

My ex had to be served but he didn’t have to actually agree and sign the paperwork. He refused to sign unless I gave him certain things he wanted… that he never helped to purchase because he was an addict! My attorney said that most times both parties are not on the same page with wanting the divorce and that most people think you can not get a divorce without both agreeing which is simply untrue. I signed, he refused …my lawyer went to court for me, x didn’t show up. Lawyer called me when he had the paperwork of completion. Best $1,100 I’ve ever spent!! I am from Virginia if that matters and we have 3 children together. This was in 2012 not sure if laws have since changed.


I was unable to get a divorce without my husband being served due to our having a child. My state wouldn’t allow one without him being physically served


In Arkansas, you file in court. If they show or don’t is their responsibility. My ex didn’t show up and the judge gave me what I wanted and it was done.


See if there are Sunshine Laws in the state he is in. In many states you can post a legal announcement in the local newspapers where he resides and would have a good chance of seeing it in the paper. Once it is published for so many weeks in a row there is a waiting period then the divorce will be granted without his signature.


This happened to me also. Due to the virus I was about to mail his papers to get him to sign. And then kept on his ass about it. Every time he got a gf I would ruin the relationship by saying I was his wife. I harassed the shit out of him until he signed those papers lol. Ours was suppose to be quick and easy too. No kids. Nothing together. Took me over a year because he went “missing”. But I knew exactly where he was. Lawyers a frauds. Court is a joke. Handle it yourself


First off, fire your attorney because it sounds like she’s just after as much money as she can get. I know you can handle this all on your own, I have and it’s not that hard. I think the hardest part, for me, was talking to the judge. Then, go talk with the court clerk that handles the divorce paperwork. They usually get a lot of their legal information from the lawyers that come into the building and they would be able to verify what you need to do to be in compliance with the state you live in to get it finalized.

Not sure how true, but I heard if you even put an ad in the paper notifying them whether they see it or not, they typically have 30 days to respond. The only thing I’m unsure of is having children involved. If you are the primary then I would assume it shouldn’t matter.


I was divorced in Michigan…my ex didn’t sign the papers and I was still awarded my divorce… sometimes it doesn’t matter if they are present or not.

Been there. I called his super a-hole boss and basically threatened to call the authorities if he didn’t make my x respond to me. Worked like a charm. :slightly_smiling_face:

When i was divorced in 2017. Similar situation ex left state papers served he swore he never got them. I was advised to run an ad in the local paper of the city i last knew he was residing in. After being ran once a week for 3 weeks he had 30 to hand write a letter to the courts where i filed saying he doesnt agree. If nothing is recieved by the courts within those 30 days the divorce is granted in your favor. You get everything you ask for

I helped my friend who couldn’t afford an attorney get this done in the state of Kentucky. (Same situation) Once proven that you did everything possible to serve him was done. (Summons, newspaper ads in last known city of residence) a judge can grant the divorce after a specific amount of time. I want to say it was 6 months in Kentucky. Are you sure he hasn’t been incarcerated? That’s a whole different ballpark.

I thought that if you didn’t know where about a you only needed to post an add in the paper about the divorce in his las known location and after 30 days I thought the judge would sign off. You coul always get a meeting with another attorney for advice and switch if need be. Or ask the court house


You send it to the last known address and get your lawyer in on it they’ll give him so many tries and if he doesn’t comply then the divorce will proceed that’s how it’s done here in Texas

I had the same issue a couple years ago.
It’s called divorce through publication, totally legal.
Sounds like she just wants more money bc if you go to trial and she raises her fees.
Good luck and hope you get this settled

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You have to put notices in the paper 3 different weekends in the area you reside in. I personally couldn’t serve my ex paperwork- tried certified mail, sheriff, the whole 9 yards- I served his mom, told her I couldn’t find him and would she please give him the paperwork. Each state is different on ex-parte publications!

Generally if he cannot be located they can publish the divorce in the paper for so long. Then with proof of publication and no response they will grant the default divorce.

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My ex did the same thing and the judge ordered my divorce final by default. I got full custody because he was a no show way too many times. It’s so frustrating!

I think you can put out multiple public request (Facebook, newspaper, mail to any address you have, etc.) to find him/her and if he/she doesn’t respond divorce should be granted.


You shouldn’t need to serve papers or have your spouse accept them. Ask where you can publish your paperwork (which is usually less of a cost of serving them). If they don’t respond, all is in your favor. Good luck!!!

I did my do it yourself divorce, as long as it’s uncontested, you just file, get a date for the hearing . Then it’s done. He doesn’t have to show up.
Afterwards they give you his paperwork, so you can serve it. When ever🙄I served my ex through a bartender! lol


My ex husband was served while in jail, he refused to sign, he had so long to sign before it wen to court, he obviously didn’t show so court automatically ruled in my favor and signed/finalized my divorce.

I believe putting it in the local paper for notification for a number of days is notifying him granting him the right to respond

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When you file for divorce, ask for public notification. If he or his attorney don’t respond and don’t show up for proceedings, the divorce is granted. Been there…done that!

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You can post it in the newspaper by filing papers. He has to respond in a certain amount of time. He he doesn’t than it’s a default divorce v

I was told that even if he wldnt sign a judge was still going to grant it …seems like no contact for 10 months u said?? U shld get anew lawyer and a courtdate and be done


If he’s been gone and not able to be found… with enough time won’t it be a situation of abandonment and then it can be granted that way?

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Sometimes an article in the paper serves as a legal way of attempting contact but it depends on your state.

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you can post it in your newspaper where he reside and if he doesn’t respond go and talk with a judge let him know the lengths you have taken and he will grant divorce without him having to sign

I have not read the above responses so I apologize if this is a repeat. Do you know what state he is in? If so you can put a public statement out in the newspaper that there is court on this day and he has the choice to come or not. I am in CT and had a lawyer and that is what they told me. If you are truly lost I would get a lawyer ( even though they are sooooo $$$$) but worth it. Some lawyers will do pro bono work or you can offer them a retainer and they will have someone else within the company give you advice and guidance you to what you should do next. Sorry you are going through this. Sending good vibes

first—find a real lawyer—next–sue the first lawyer


I had to hire a private investigator to prove to the court that I tried to find him. I was in Nevada though.

In most states if they refuse to show up at court you get an automatic win but they must be served the papers.

Depends on the state. I know in Ca if they were out of state we could send them certified mail with a signature required and that could be used as proof of service

Any family on his side that would be willing to track him down?

If you can find a city he’s living in you can contact the local cops and ask them to serve him papers.

Tell your lawyer to put them in the paper for 30 days i do believe that if he dosent respond that u can move forward unless they have changed the laws and ask your lawyer why she hasn’t suggested that because she definitely knows this

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My parents divorced thru a dad in the paper for a certain amount of time and my mom never answered so the judge signed off.

Where I live, after they attempt to serve the spouse 3 times without any luck, the judge signs off on the papers and grants the divorce.

You can set a court time to see the judge. He can grant you a default and finalize your divorce.

Same situation. Many years ago. Hire a lawyer. Lawyer hires PI. PI finds him. Serves him papers like everyone else. He responds or doesn’t. You still get the divorce.

It depends on your state. I googled what your asking and added my state less than 3 months later my fiance was divorced from her ex

Depending on your state , you may have to post it in the paper as like a good faith attempt and then the judge will decide to move forward or not. You can always call the court and ask about the process.

Best of luck to you :two_hearts:

Why can’t the judge give you a divorce without his consent?

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Mine in California was after served he has 30 days to contest andifnhe doesn’t then it set as is in the paperwork.

Idk if you can still do this but put an ad in your local paper about divorce.

I was told to put it in the newspaper for 30 days. Check your state law on that though!

In wa they would have you put a three week newspaper ad and if he doesn’t respond it automatically goes through

Depending on your state there are a few things you can check. 1. Can you get a absolute divorce for abandonment? If he has left and had no contact with you or your children within so many months you can have a uncontested divorce. 2. Does your state allow for public notification? You place a ad in State and Local newspaper stating your request for divorce if he doesn’t reply within 30days State goes ahead granting divorce.

Some states. After 12 months of no contact its considered abandonment. 3 news paper ads , try and serve him or her . Then file.

Let it be known that you’ve come into a very large fortune. He’ll be banging on your door.

In michigan he has xxx tike to respond and if not then they will still move forwars