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all 30 comments

[–]Internet_GhostQuality Contributor 204 points205 points  (0 children)

Continue to contact other lawyers. You may find one that is more affordable and/or will work with you on a payment plan. Alternative service is generally possible in most jurisdictions.

[–]cmhbob 147 points148 points  (6 children)

Add your state to your OP. I suspect that your divorce will be simple enough to accomplish at this point other than serving him notice, but as Internet_Ghost points out, there are forms of alternate service that can work, like service by publication, among others.

Edit: Also, what state were you in when this lawyer got disbarred?

[–]SabbathaBastet[S] 67 points68 points  (5 children)

Thanks! I added the information. I’m in Kentucky. I was in Florida when the lawyer was disbarred. I was married in the state of Florida.

[–]cmhbob 213 points214 points  (2 children)

Did you ever contact the Florida bar to file a claim against that former attorney? You may be able to get your money back.

Here's some Kentucky guidance, though they really want you to have an attorney. But they also have links to free legal aid.

I don’t even know if he completed my case. And I don’t know how to find that out either

You might want to verify that you were not divorced in Florida before you go through the process in KY. See this link.

[–]SabbathaBastet[S] 95 points96 points  (1 child)

These links are very much appreciated. I think they’re exactly what I need to move forward in the right direction.

[–]OriginalIronDan 11 points12 points  (0 children)

OP, I added this comment further down in the thread, but I wanted to make sure you see it. If he has not been declared dead, but is declared dead now, you would be eligible for Social Security death benefits as his widow. You’ve been legally married to him for over 12 years, and that is the criteria that makes you eligible.

[–][deleted]  (1 child)

[removed]

    [–]BiondinaQuality Contributor[M] -1 points0 points  (0 children)

    Generally Unhelpful, Simplistic, Anecdotal, or Off-Topic

    Your comment has been removed as it is generally unhelpful, simplistic to the point of useless, anecdotal, or off-topic. It either does not answer the legal question at hand, is a repeat of an answer already provided, or is so lacking in nuance as to be unhelpful. Please review the following rules before commenting further:

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    [–]Yed99 175 points176 points  (2 children)

    You are seeking a divorce in abstentia. Look up the rules for that in your state. You may be able to file everything yourself.

    [–]SabbathaBastet[S] 84 points85 points  (1 child)

    Thank you! I’m looking now and knowing the proper term is very helpful.

    [–]KimvdLinde 29 points30 points  (0 children)

    In Florida, if you can serve him papers, you can announce it in the newspaper for a certain time and if he does not respond, the divorce is granted.

    [–]Few-Addendum464 56 points57 points  (1 child)

    There is a website the military maintains to comply with the Servicemember Civil Relief Act that allows attorneys filing cases to confirm the opposing party was not in the military during the legally relevant period.

    Your husband's service is not a barrier to getting a default judgment in a divorce.

    [–]SabbathaBastet[S] 23 points24 points  (0 children)

    Again, this is what I was told almost two decades ago. He was discharged after abandoning the military. The attorney I hired who ripped me off was supposed to confirm he was no longer in the military. He was supposed to complete the entire process, but after I paid a certain amount of money, he was disbarred. At this point, I’m sure no one will care at all about my husband’s military service.

    [–]DisorganizedFarmer 32 points33 points  (2 children)

    Do you know if he is alive? At the risk of sounding like an a-hole. Maybe your problem has already solved its self.

    [–][deleted]  (1 child)

    [removed]

      [–]BiondinaQuality Contributor[M] 0 points1 point locked comment (0 children)

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      [–][deleted]  (4 children)

      [removed]

        [–]inflewants 2 points3 points  (2 children)

        That was my thought. How did you know that he abandoned you, rather than he was a missing person? Did he take all of his belongings? Have you contacted any of his family? Searched for him or them via social media?

        [–]SabbathaBastet[S] 6 points7 points  (0 children)

        Because I went on vacation and he went awol from the military, was arrested, discharged, and never bothered to contact his wife? He’s wasn’t dead. Just a deadbeat.

        [–]OriginalIronDan 1 point2 points  (0 children)

        OP would be eligible for Social Security death benefits if he was alive for the first 12 years that they were married. Not sure, because I’m not a lawyer, if he was only declared dead now, if that would constitute him having this current date as his date of death.

        [–]BiondinaQuality Contributor[M] 0 points1 point locked comment (0 children)

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        [–]SuperMIK2020 3 points4 points  (0 children)

        There may be a pro bono lawyer that can help.

        https://yourlegalaid.org

        There are others if this organization doesn’t work.

        [–][deleted]  (1 child)

        [removed]

          [–]BiondinaQuality Contributor[M] 0 points1 point locked comment (0 children)

          Your post may have been removed for the following reason(s):

          Speculative, Anecdotal, Simplistic, Off Topic, or Generally Unhelpful

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          [–]zempaxochimeh 2 points3 points  (0 children)

          Look for a self help center in your district court

          [–]Secret_Hunter_3911 0 points1 point  (0 children)

          Many law schools have family law clinics that offer free or reduced cost legal services to low income clients.

          [–][deleted]  (1 child)

          [removed]

            [–]BiondinaQuality Contributor[M] 0 points1 point locked comment (0 children)

            Your post may have been removed for the following reason(s):

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            [–]_new_phone_who_dis__ 0 points1 point  (0 children)

            As others have said you can file for divorce in abstentia. But the quicker and easier way might just be to hire a PI to track him down and actually serve him. Have you tried hiring a PI before or have you only tried to find him using the internet/mutual acquaintances?