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When a Spouse Cannot Be Found in Oklahoma
When one spouse wants to call it quits but cannot find his or her missing partner, or when he or she is hiding, divorce by publication comes into play. Service by publication is commonly used in a divorce action to serve a spouse who has disappeared without a leaving a forwarding address...
When the Respondent cannot or will not be found (and, therefore, cannot be served the divorce papers), the Petitioner must conduct what is termed a "diligent search" followed by Service by Publication.
Oklahoma's Search Requirements and Process
Oklahoma courts require a good faith effort by the Petitioner to prove that he or she has made a genuine search for his or her missing partner. This means due diligence.
In order to be eligible for a "Divorce by Publication", you must complete and submit an Affidavit of Diligent Search to the court. This document clearly outlines all of the actions you have taken to locate your spouse, essentially proving to the court that your spouse absolutely can't be found.
If you actively pursue locating your spouse through the methods outlined in the Affidavit of Diligent Search, and still can't locate your spouse, then a "Divorce by Publication" is your likely method of getting a divorce.
Filing for Divorce by Publication in Oklahoma
If the search is fruitless, Oklahoma permits "[s]ervice by publication on named defendant that cannot be served using due diligence by any other method..."
The Summons is published in a legal newspaper in the county where the petition is filed. It must be published once a week for three consecutive weeks.
Copyright Notice: These Oklahoma divorce laws above are copyrighted by 3 Step Solutions, LLC. This abbreviated and revised version of the state laws has been compiled from applicable state laws and unauthorized reproduction in any fashion is prohibited. Violation of this copyright notice may result in immediate legal action.