If you want to divorce your spouse but cannot locate him or her, there are certain steps you can take to get a divorce. The following are three things to consider.
Use an online location service
There are several companies that provide a service for locating people. They have access to large databases and can locate people across the nation. This type of service can find people who are not hiding and have some of their information listed in public records. If your spouse is hiding, this type of service won't work. Also, if your spouse is incarcerated or is diseased, this type of service is not likely to work either.
Hire a private investigator
A private investigator can do a deep search and locate people that cannot be found by other means. They can find people who are in jail, who have died or even in cases where they don't have an address. A private investigator is the most exhaustive search that is possible. However, before you hire one, keep in mind that this type of search may not be necessary because it may go beyond the legal requirements for what is expected of someone seeking to divorce their missing spouse. If the only reason you have for locating your spouse is for a divorce, your best course of action may be to consult with an attorney. Not only will an attorney be able to advise you on the need to use a private investigator, but they often work with private investigators, so they will know who best to hire.
Use a newspaper
You may not need to go so far as to hire a private investigator. It will depend on your state's laws. The courts will expect you to engage in due diligence to find your spouse, but the exact interpretation of this phrase may will vary from one state to another. In some states you may only need to place an ad in a large newspaper in the area of your spouse's last known whereabouts with your contact information. If there is no response, then you can proceed with the divorce. An attorney can assist in the process for your particular state.
Whatever your situation is, if you desire to divorce your missing spouse, there is a process for doing so. Naturally, you will do your own investigation by attempting to contact your spouse's family and friends, but you can augment this with an online people search service. A private investigator will be your best bet, but unless there are additional reasons for finding your spouse besides a divorce, you should contact a family attorney, such as Nelson, McPherson Summers & Santos LC to find out the requirements for your particular state.