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Dissolving your Marriage: Do I Need Consent from my Spouse?

All states allow couples to divorce without a spouse being abusive or unfaithful. Simply not getting along can be grounds for being granted a divorce. Keep in mind that every divorce has some requisites that need to be tackled prior to being granted. Resistance from a spouse to cooperate is the leading barrier you need to climb to end your marriage.

A no-fault divorce is one where a couple dissolves their marriage by mutual consent, based on something like “irreconcilable differences,” rather than requiring one spouse to accuse the other of adultery, abuse, imprisonment, or abandonment. If your spouse refuses to cooperate and/or nowhere to be found you can still divorce them. The process may take longer but the goal will be accomplished.

There are two types of divorces in New Jersey. If the parties reach a deal on the grounds of a settlement, then your divorce is considered to be uncontested. Nevertheless, if you and your spouse are unable to agree on the divorce terms, then you case will be considered contested. Contested divorces are where issues remain to be resolved and are more challenging than those where couples agree on how they will split their assets. Serving papers by publication (in the newspaper) or having them served by someone else can be permitted if you cannot locate your spouse, you must show the court that you have exercised due diligence in trying to find them.

The Judge may ask you the following questions, so be prepared:

  • Do you have common friends?

  • Have you contacted their relatives?

  • Are they on Facebook?

Your spouse cannot divorce you without your knowledge and will be required by the court to serve you with divorce papers. Refusing to respond to your spouse’s divorce request will delay the process, but will NOT prevent the divorce. Refusing to sign papers is not an option, your soon to be ex husband or wife may be able to obtain a default against you within 20 or 30 days after you are served, limiting your rights to spousal support, child support, and property including retirement benefits.

Obstacles can occur in the postponement of the divorce process, but the marriage will legally end whether all parties are involved or not.

Contact We Serve NJ LLC for your service of process needs at or call us at 800-637-1805 for assistance.


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