Can I file for a divorce if I don’t know where my spouse lives?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can I file for a divorce if I don’t know where my spouse lives?

I am trying to get a no fault divorce; my spouse and I have been separated for 4 years. She will not give me her address, so I filed the paperwork for the

divorce and sent it care of her parents because that was the last address I had

for her. She knows I need the address but refuses to give it to me and says

the divorce papers will just sit at her parents. Can I still get a divorce since she knows about the paperwork but refuses to do anything?

Asked on February 20, 2018 under Family Law, Pennsylvania


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

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

The law allows for service of divorce papers by publication BUT only after you have exhausted all other avenues to find your spouse.  You know her last known address so you may have to engage the help of a private investigator or service to run a serach on her whereabouts.  If you knew her employer she can be served there as well.  Good luck.

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.

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