When you file for divorce, your spouse has the right to be notified about the fact that you are trying to end your marriage. Your spouse has the right to receive your request to dissolve your union and to provide a response. Your spouse also has the right to argue for his or her preferred division of property, assets, debts, and custody. In order to make sure that your spouse gets the right to respond to your divorce petition and come to court to make arguments, there are strict rules for how the divorce papers must be delivered. The process of getting the divorce papers to your spouse is called service of process.
In some cases, it can be complicated to serve divorce papers to a spouse who is out of state. You need to ensure that this is done correctly so there are no delays and so you can move forward towards a valid divorce. A Las Vegas divorce and family law attorney at Pintar Albiston, LLP can provide invaluable assistance with all steps of your divorce, from filing the paperwork to end your marriage to getting your spouse served to moving your case forward. Call today to speak with an attorney for the help you need.
How to Serve Divorce Papers to a Spouse who is Out of State
Before you even try to serve divorce papers to a spouse who is out of state, you need to make sure you are filing for divorce in a court with jurisdiction over your case. There are residency requirements in the state of Nevada and at least one spouse must have been a resident of the state for six weeks before a divorce in order for you to be eligible to end your marriage within the state. If you have kids, the issue of where to divorce can be more complicated because there are rules regarding which courts get to decide on issues relating to the custody of your children and the support that is due. The state where you file can have a big impact on what laws apply to your divorce process, so always talk to an attorney about where you should submit your petition for divorce.
Once you have determined you can file for divorce in Nevada, you need to consider how to serve divorce papers to a spouse who is out of state. You can usually do this by contacting a process server in the state where your spouse is currently residing at the time the divorce petition is filed. Local law enforcement (like a local sheriff) may also be able to serve your spouse. You can have anyone who is over 18 deliver the papers personally in most cases and you can also send the papers via certified mail with a return receipt requested so your spouse will need to sign for the papers (you must have proof of service).
In one novel case, the Washington Post reports that a court has also recently ruled that divorce papers can actually be served via private message on Facebook when the other spouse was hard to get ahold of, so there are many possibilities for how to serve divorce papers to a spouse who is out of state.
Pintar Albiston, LLP can provide assistance with the process of getting your spouse served. Call today to schedule a consultation and learn more.