Getting a Divorce When the Other Party Won't Sign?

I have been separated for 14 years and the other party won't sign the divorce papers. They are now no longer any good. I live in Pennsylvania and he is in Maryland. What do I do? I want to remarry. We have filed all of the papers in the state that we were married in and put them through the clerk. She said that because I didn't request a master's hearing I was still married. That was the only time the other party signed the papers.


By Victoria

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August 27, 20110 found this helpful
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If you've lived in Pennsylvania for at least 6 months, you can file for divorce in that state. If the other party doesn't sign the papers, you can probably still get an uncontested divorce - especially if he doesn't file papers to contest it or appear in court.

I don't know the laws there,if this is required- but if you have his address, you should probably have him served by a process server. This proves he got the papers & knows you filed for divorce, that way he can't say he didn't know.


If you don't have his address, but know what city he's in - some states allow for you to post it in the paper for a certain number of days, then proceed with the dicorce. That shows that you made an effort to notify him.

More than anything, you really need to get some legal advice on this issue, it sounds like you've been getting bad legal advice. Here are links to 2 websites that can help you. The 1st answers some of your questions & gives yo links to other sites. The other link is for Legal Aid in PN, they offer free or pro-rated legal help.

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August 21, 20110 found this helpful

Where I live, it used to be and probably still is that when divorce papers were served on a person, that person had 60 days to respond, and if there was no response, the divorce was granted to the person wanting the divorce, by default. I would be surprised if there wasn't something similar in all states. It might be a different length of time, but I would think there would be something similar. The papers that I was served with, had that statement right on them. I counter filed, not because I wanted to save the marriage, but to make sure I was treated fairly.


Also, I don't think you have to file for divorce in the state where you were married, but instead where ever you live. The way people move around now it would be pretty hard to file in the state where you were married. Look in your phone book, where I live a lot of attorneys offer a free first time consultation. That way you could find out where you stand and give you an idea what you should do. Something doesn't sound right, in what you said, but if you desparately want to remarry, you might have to start the proceedings over.

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August 22, 20110 found this helpful

What advise does your attorney give you about the matter?

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August 23, 20110 found this helpful

So request a master's hearing. Better yet, get a lawyer. Someone has given you bad advice.There is no such thing as a person having to stay married. All this time he is your next of kin.

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