How to File for Divorce If Your Husband Is in Jail

By Cindy Hill

Incarceration can create a serious strain on any relationship or family. A woman whose husband is in jail may well wish to divorce so that she can move on with her life and possibly remarry. Many states have specific laws making it easier for a woman to divorce a husband who is in jail.

Incarceration can create a serious strain on any relationship or family. A woman whose husband is in jail may well wish to divorce so that she can move on with her life and possibly remarry. Many states have specific laws making it easier for a woman to divorce a husband who is in jail.

Step 1

Speak with the clerk at the family court for your jurisdiction and ask whether there is a specific form for filing for divorce from an incarcerated spouse. Obtain either the incarcerated-spouse divorce filing forms or the standard no-fault divorce filing forms.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More

Step 2

Request a copy of your husband's mittimus -- the document formally committing him to the jail -- from the criminal court in which he was convicted. Complete the divorce filing paperwork and attach a copy of the mittimus to the filing.

Step 3

Submit the divorce filing to the family court along with the necessary filing fee. Inquire of the clerk whether you need to serve the paperwork on your husband or whether the court does that in cases of incarcerated spouses. If you must serve the paperwork, either hire the local sheriff's office to do so or mail it by certified mail.

Step 4

Research your state laws regarding legal grounds for divorce if your husband declines to sign the no-fault divorce filing. Seek help from the family court clerks, a qualified family law attorney or your local legal aid office if you cannot locate these laws. Most states include criminal conviction and incarceration as automatic legal grounds for an at-fault divorce.

Step 5

Obtain and complete your family court's at-fault divorce filing forms, attaching a copy of the state statute regarding divorcing incarcerated spouses and a copy of your husband's mittimus. File these along with any additional necessary filing fee and have the paperwork served according to your local family court procedures. At least one hearing will be held after this filing, but it is unlikely that your husband will be transported from jail to attend the hearing.

Step 6

Secure a copy of the final divorce decree from the family court. Advise the court of any change in address to ensure that you get a copy of the final order. If personal safety is a concern, have the final order mailed to your attorney's office or the local legal aid office.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More
How to Obtain a Divorce in Ohio When the Location of the Spouse Is Unknown

References

Related articles

How to Get an Annulment in Arizona

An annulment is the legal recognition by an Arizona court that a marriage is void. In Arizona, an annulment is granted if the marriage was void from the beginning or, according to the Arizona Revised Statues, an impediment existed that caused the marriage to be void. For example, if you were already married at the time of your marriage or underage, these would be considered grounds for annulment in Arizona. To receive an annulment in Arizona, you follow the same procedure as filing for divorce.

How to Probate a Will in Ohio

Probate describes the legal proceedings conducted when a person dies and leaves a will behind. Probating a will in Ohio involves a designated representative, usually the executor, legally distributing the assets of the estate and settling the deceased person's financial affairs.The Ohio Probate Court System has specific rules and procedures for the probate of a will, and all court actions relevant to the estate must be completed for the will to be probated.

How to Divorce an Unwilling Spouse

If you want to get a divorce but your spouse does not, you may be able to dissolve the marriage anyway. A contested divorce can be complicated and time-consuming. Unlike a divorce in which both parties agree to end the marriage, a contested divorce generally requires you to attend a trial in front of a judge and argue why your marriage should be dissolved. As you proceed with your divorce, remember that the divorce laws and procedures for divorcing an unwilling spouse vary from state to state.

Get Divorced Online

Related articles

Divorcing a Convicted Felon

The felony conviction of a spouse can be disrupting and damaging to a marriage, especially if the convicted person also ...

How to Divorce a Missing Husband in Mississippi

If your husband skips out on your marriage and disappears, it complicates the divorce process, but it won't stop you ...

How to Deal With an Abusive Husband During a Divorce

Domestic abuse can escalate during divorce, due to heightened emotions and the abusive spouse's loss of control over ...

How to Get Divorced in California if Your Husband Is in Jail

Provided you have been a California resident for at least six months, you have the right to divorce your husband ...

Browse by category
Ready to Begin? GET STARTED