I’ve got a divorce client right now who’s pretty frustrated with the situation because his spouse is missing. She moved out of the area; she moved to Georgia. We had an address for her; we sent the paperwork down for the County Sheriff to go and serve her. They looked all over, did the different searches and everything else, to go and serve her, and they aren’t able to do so, so they sent the paperwork back. Are we stuck?
Well, technically, no; we’re not stuck. What we can do is apply to the court for a substitute service. Instead of handing the paperwork to the defendant, a substitute service is whatever the judge says can be substituted. In the old days, that was your local newspaper for ‘x’ amount of times at a certain size, all that kind of stuff. Now, instead this particular case being a New York State paper, I believe the judge is going to require us to go and publish not only locally but in Georgia where she had her last known residency. Additionally, I believe the judge is going to require us to do something online if we still have her email address.
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