Saturday, May 10, 2014

In 2003 I married a non-US citizen in Fla and shortly after he left the country and has never returned. Is the marriage legal?

Q:  The ceremony was performed in a court in Florida and I have a copy of the marriage certificate but the person I married is not a US citizen. He has since moved back to Nigeria and has remarried there. I have no way to reach or contact him. It was been many years since we last spoke. I am currently engaged. My fiancee and I are in the marriage application process. I do not want to bring up this issue with my fiancee unless absolutely necessary. How do I know if this marriage is legal? If it is legal, what can I do to terminate the marriage if the person I married is not in the US and is not reachable?

A:  David's Answer:  From the facts you've presented, you're legally married. You would need to commence a divorce action & have your husband served in Nigeria. If you do not have an address for him, you may need to hire a P.I. in Nigeria to conduct a diligent search. Speak to a Family Law attorney in your area.  -- David Bliven, Westchester Family Law attorney (

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