How do I get a divorce when I do not know where my other half is located?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022Fact Checked

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

How do I get a divorce when I do not know where my other half is located?

I left my husband 3 years ago because he was abusive and violent. We have not been together since I left. I do not have any idea where he is located or have any way to find him. And to be honest ,with his temper and how violent he is, I do not want him to know where I am. We do not have any assets or property together. I just want my divorce so that I can be done with him and not have to worry any more and move on with my life.

Asked on July 3, 2016 under Family Law, Georgia


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

As with any divorce, you will have to "serve" your spouse with notice of the legal action in order to give them an opportunity to answer your complaint. In a case such as yours, you can give your husband notice via "publication". What this means is that you can put a notice in a newspaper in the area of his last known location. The court will instruct in what newspapers, etc. to do this. After that, if you still don't hear from your husband, then you can proceed with the case and a "divorce by default" will be granted. As a general rule, a person can file for their own divorce and most states have websites to walk them through the process. However, your situation is a bit different and if you can, you would be well-advised to seek legal counsel in this matter. Since money is an issue, there are agencies/groups that provide legal services for free/reduced cost for those who are income eligible. Legal Aid is such a service. Also, check to see if there is a law school near to where you live since they run free/low cost clinics that handle divorce cases. Additionally, you can contact the state/county/city bar association to see if it has a list of lawyerss who will take your case for free or possibly a reduced fee based on your income/circumstances. Finally, you can contact your local Department of Social Services to see if it can refer you to free services.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption