What To Do When You Need To Serve A Deported Spouse

People who are in the unfortunate position of divorcing spouses who have been deported to other countries will face a tough challenge right out of the gate: serving said spouses with the notice of the impending court action required by the legal system. This can be difficult for a number of reasons, but here are a couple of things you must do to accomplish this feat.

Record All Attempts to Contact Your Spouse

The courts require you to notify your spouse you are divorcing him or her, but this can be particularly difficult if you are unable to locate your soon-to-be ex-partner. Thus, almost all states allow one party to post notice of the divorce in alternative ways (e.g. place in newspaper, send notice via social media). However, you must prove you made a good faith effort to locate your spouse and serve notice to him or her.

Therefore, it's critical you record all attempts to contact your spouse so you can provide proof to the courts you did all you could to fulfill the process service requirement. Record conversations with your spouse's friends and family where you ask for information about his or her whereabouts. Take screenshots of any messages you send via Facebook and other social media sites. Send all correspondence via registered mail with return receipt requested, and save any mail that comes back undelivered.

Make Sure the Service Type is Acceptable in Your Spouse's Country

Another thing you'll need to do is make sure the service process type is acceptable in your spouse's home country. This is important if you hope to enlist the foreign government's help in enforcing the divorce decree.

If you don't properly serve your spouse according to the laws of the country where he or she resides, the foreign government may consider the case invalid and reject any attempts to make your ex-partner turn over any monies or assets he or she owes you. Additionally, your ex could use the improper service excuse to get the divorce overturned and/or invalidate the terms of the decree.

You can typically locate information about process service requirements in various countries online. However, an attorney who handles international lawsuits can also provide this information as well as help you meet the requirements for both countries.

For more information on serving a spouse who's been deported or help handling your divorce, contact a family attorney in your area.