Cannot Find Your Spouse
If you are unable to locate your spouse, you can rely on your attorney’s team to conduct a search. New Jersey law requires you to make a “good faith” search for your spouse. An attorney can handle this, using a last known postal address as well as DMV information and your spouse’s Social Security Number. If this search still fails to locate your spouse, the court allows you to publish the divorce complaint in a local newspaper. After this you will be able to move forward with your divorce.
Out of State Divorce
In New Jersey, there is no legal barrier to filing a complaint for divorce even if your spouse lives outside of the state. So long as you’ve lived in New Jersey for a year or more (except in cases of adultery), if you file for divorce in New Jersey, that county will have jurisdiction and handle the case, no matter where your spouse is living.
Time frames for divorce proceedings vary, and any cookie cutter estimates will be unreliable. A divorce could be finalized in under a month, or it could drag on well past a year. The amount of time a divorce takes will depend upon the facts of the case and the willingness of both parties to communicate and to compromise. An experienced divorce attorney will be able to give you a more precise and reasonable estimate after examining your circumstances at an initial consultation.
Cost of Divorce
Time and cost are usually the first questions on anybody’s mind. In most divorce cases the two are related in direct proportion. It surprises some to know that the cost of a divorce isn’t necessarily tied to the value of the assets involved. A potentially complicated divorce involving many valueable assets, property, and children could be resolved inexpensively if the parties come to an agreement before filing, or early in the process. Because most attorneys bill by the hour, the longer two spouses drag on negotiations, the more expensive the divorce becomes for both parties.
The cost of an uncontested divorce in New Jersey will typically start around $1,500.00, plus the filing fee. If the divorce is contested and there are assets and issues such as custody and child support, the initial retainer could range from $3,500.00 to $5,000.00, or more depending on the circumstances. A long and fiercely contested divorce could cost as much as $15-20,000.
If you need help divorcing a spouse you can’t find, please call us right away and we can get started on a search for you. Call today and set up a consultation.