If you are attempting to divorce a spouse and have no idea where he is, there is still a legal way to proceed with your case. After exhausting all efforts to track him down, including sending notices to his last known home and work addresses, you may provide notice to him through a newspaper. This process is known as service by publication. Prepare your legal document, contact the local newspaper and publish the notice to alert your spouse of an upcoming divorce hearing.
Prepare the notice. Name the state and county in which the case has been filed and the case number, such as, "State of Florida, County of Calhoun, Case Number CC-1005." Then write, "In re the marriage of" and reference the filing spouse as petitioner and the spouse being sought as respondent. Follow with the title, "Summons By Publication."
Note the state again and address the respondent. For instance, "The State of Florida, to the person named above as respondent." State that the petitioner has filed a petition for divorce. Include the date, time and location of the divorce hearing. Request any response be received in writing within the number of days required by your state, and then provide the address of the petitioner and the clerk of court.
Sign the petition in front of a notary public. Keep a copy for your records. Deliver the other copy to the clerk of court for the case file.
Contact the local newspaper. Ask the deadline for legal notices and deliver your notice prior to that time. Provide the newspaper with the number of times the notice must run in the paper and pay the required fee. Request to proofread the notice prior to publishing and verify that all information is correct.
Request two notarized affidavits of publication from the newspaper after the notice publication period ends. This notary service is usually available for legal notices at no additional cost. File one affidavit with the clerk of court's office for the case file. Keep the other copy for your records.