Q: My mom needs a divorce but can not find the spouse, looks like the county she lives in only offers a simplified divorce
She doesnt want to hire a lawyer, but when i went to the local court house to get divorce papers all they have available is a simplified dissolution and the clerk handed me a paper for phone numbers to kane county bar but my mother resides in kendall county. I even went on their website and all their information regarding divorce was about a simplified dissolution. what is she supposed to do? she cant even find her spouse, hasnt had ny contact with him since he was imprisoned in 2001 and was later released but she doesnt know how to find him?
A: An attorney might be best, because they have a lot of experience in finding hard to find people. You can also hire a "skip trace" professional. These people typically are paid to search public records databases to locate the whereabouts of people. If she truly cannot find them, after a thorough and diligent search, she can do what is called a "publication divorce." This places an publication notice in the local law bulletin (in cook county, it's the Chicago law bulletin). After waiting a set period of time, she then can proceed with the divorce. Again, an attorney could really be helpful making sure that local procedure is followed here.
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