Divorce & Annulment

questions & answers

Question: Why does one have to make a newspaper publication when filing for divorce?

Answer: One does not have to use publication for filing a divorce. The newspaper publication is a means to serve a party when all other means of service have been exhausted. The initial process of a party seeking a divorce must first file a petition for a dissolution of marriage. This person is known as the petitioner. The other party is the respondent. The respondent must be served with the petition so they have proper notice and have an opportunity to respondent. The petitioner must make every attempt possible to serve the parties. If the petitioner knows where the party resides they must attempt service at the residence. If the petitioner does not know where they reside, then service may be attempted at their place of employment. If a petitioner does not know either then they may attempt service by mail. There are some instances in which a petitioner does not have an address where to locate the respondent in which case the petitioner may service by method of publication. In Maricopa County when using the method publication, service is complete 30 days after the date of first publication. Please note, a petitioner using this method must submit to the court an affidavit in support of service by publication. Here, the party is swearing they have made every single attempt to reach the party by all other methods proscribed under the Arizona Rules of Family Law Procedure §§40 and 41 as stated here. Additionally, if a party is needing help with the appropriate documents the Maricopa County Superior Court website has a self-service center providing individuals with packets for dissolution of marriage with or without children.


  • Why does one have to make a newspaper publication when filing for divorce?




  • Please select your county of residence below.



  • State Bar of Arizona
  • Maricopa County Bar
    Referral number 602-257-4434
  • Pima County Bar
    Referral number 520-623-4625
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline
  • Bankruptcy Court Self Help Center
  • Certified Legal Document Preparer Program


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