If a judge has requested personal service of process is there an alternate method that can be used if the party is trying not to be served?

UPDATED: Aug 10, 2011

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If a judge has requested personal service of process is there an alternate method that can be used if the party is trying not to be served?

We have 5 different addresses where my husbands ex-wife could potentially be living and have been informed that she is moving states. We have been paying alimony for 7 years and need to ask for a stop date (she has a gavron warning and hasn’t worked). The address with the court isn’t a valid address for her so the judge asked us to start over and personally serve her and now we can’t find her. Any suggestions?

Asked on August 10, 2011 California


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Generally speaking - and I say that because one I can not read the paperwork here to get an idea as to what has happened before and two, I am not admitted in California - the court will not prolong a matter and basically torture a party because they can not locate the other party to be served.  Courts generally require that you do what is called "due diligence" in attempting to find the other party.  Sometimes it requires hiring a private investigator to try and locate them. In fact, you would make a motion to allow the party to be served via publication (in the newspaper) and submit a due diligence affidavit chronicling your attempts and an affidavit from a PI chronicling their attempts.  In the end it will be worth the money spent.  Good luck.

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