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If you're wondering about a missing spouse divorce Florida, it is likely that you can. Note however that it is always quicker and less expensive if you can find your spouse and get them to cooperate and sign the divorce papers. Also note that except under very limited circumstances, all the judge can do is grant the divorce if your spouse is missing. If your spouse is later found and properly served with the divorce papers, it's possible that the judge can modify the final judgment of divorce to include division of property and debt, and payment of support if applicable, etc.

Missing Spouse Divorce Florida

So let's take a look at what the word "missing" means. If you're living with your spouse and they leave and you just can't find them for a couple of weeks, that doesn't mean they're missing such that you will be able to get a missing spouse divorce in Florida. Your obligation is to find your spouse so that they can be served with divorce papers by the sheriff or a process server. But if your spouse has been gone for a substantial period of time and you just don't know where they are, you will qualify for a missing spouse divorce.

How to Divorce a Missing Spouse in Florida

Also, if your spouse is out of the country permanently then you will be able to qualify for a missing spouse divorce in Florida no matter how long they have been gone. Or if your spouse conceals their whereabouts even though you are in touch with them, and they've been gone for a substantial period of time, you will qualify for a missing spouse divorce. So, for example, even though you might be in touch with them by phone, if you request their address and they refuse to give it, that would constitute concealment.

Missing Spouse Divorce Florida

A missing spouse divorce involves publication in the newspaper. The law says that if somebody is not around to be served papers, then the divorce matter needs to be published in the newspaper where you intend to file the case for four consecutive weeks. Then a very brief court appearance is required where you will testify that you've made certain efforts to find your spouse, that you don't know where they are, and that you have no further leads on where they are. In a missing spouse divorce Florida you must also sign an Affidavit of diligent search which outlines the efforts that you've made to find your spouse. While an extensive search is not required, you must do common sense things to try to find them and the judge may ask you what you've done. The judge must conclude that you've made a good faith effort to find your spouse. So, for example, you would have to try and contact your spouse to ask them their address.

How to Divorce in Florida When Spouse is Missing

So the next step about how to divorce in Florida when spouse is missing, you would have to try and contact the employer about your spouse's whereabouts if you know their employer. You would also have to talk to family and friends or anyone that might know where your spouse is to see if they can give you information about the whereabouts of your spouse. Also, you should check social media to see if you can get any leads on where your spouse is. So you have to show a good faith effort to find your spouse, you can't just say I don't feel like contacting them, or trying to find them. If later your spouse finds out about the divorce and claims that you didn't make sufficient effort to find them, they can try to overturn the divorce and you will have to defend the efforts that you made to find them.

Missing Spouse Divorce Florida

Also note that if your spouse is out of the country and you have an address for them that you are duty bound to put your spouse on notice of the proceedings. They are entitled to notice of the proceedings in a missing spouse divorce Florida. So, for example, you would have to send a letter or at least email your spouse advising of the proceedings and of any hearing dates, etc. You should be prepared to tell them what court you have filed the case in and the case number, etc. Then, final thing to note, there are several costs associated in a divorce in Florida when spouse is missing. Firstly is the attorneys fee, secondly is the newspaper publication fee, and thirdly is the clerk of court filing fee. All in all, the process takes about 8-10 weeks. This is because by the time the newspaper publication period is over and a court hearing is set, it will take about that long.



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