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My sister needs to divorce her husband who's out of the country since 2002 and can't return.

Upper Marlboro, MD |
Filed under: Divorce Adultery Marriage

They have no children together. His name is on her pension. Does he need to be served or can she file for divorce without his consent?

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Attorney answers 2


Your sister may file for divorce if grounds exists under Maryland law, such as adultery, desertion, voluntary separation, two year separation, cruelty of treatment, and excessively vicious conduct, etc., as defined by the Maryland code. The length of time they have lived separate and apart would effect, with exception to adultery, whether she could file for a limited or absolute divorce. She does not need his consent to a divorce once a valid ground exists which she can prove. Her husband would be entitled to service of the complaint for divorce, but depending on the quality of the valid attempts to secure personal service, the Court might be persuaded to permit other forms of service.


Your sister may file for divorce, but the husband needs to be served. Depending on the country of his residence, it may be simple or extremely complicated.

Mark Kotlarsky, Esq.
7400 Heartleaf Circle
Laurel MD 20707
phone 301-765-1855
fax - 888-765-1855

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