Divorce & Annulment

questions & answers

Question: How long do I need to run an ad in the newspaper to get a divorce?


Carefully review the Arizona Rules of Family Law Procedure, Rule 41.  Be sure you are permitted by the court to use an "alternative" method of service.

Note the following language in Rule 41(L) and Rule 41(M):

"L. Alternative or Substituted Service. If service by one of the means set forth in the preceding paragraphs of this rule proves impracticable, then service may be accomplished in such manner, other than by publication, as the court, upon motion and without notice, may direct. Whenever the court allows an alternative or substitute form of service pursuant to this subpart, reasonable efforts shall be undertaken by the party making service to assure that actual notice of the commencement of the action is provided to the person to be served and, in any event, the summons and the pleading to be served, as well as any order of the court authorizing an alternative method of service, shall be mailed to the last known business or residence address of the person to be served. Service by publication may be employed only under the circumstances, and in accordance with the procedures, specified in paragraph M of this rule and Rule 42(D)." (Emphasis added).

* * *

"M. Service by Publication; Return. Service by publication is not sufficient to confer jurisdiction upon the court to determine issues of paternity, child support, spousal maintenance, division of marital property, or any other issue requiring personal jurisdiction over a party. In actions involving dissolution of a marriage, custody, or any other issue not requiring personal jurisdiction over a party, and where the person to be served is one whose residence is unknown to the party seeking service but whose last known residence address was within the state, or has avoided service of process, and service by publication is the best means practicable under the circumstances for providing notice of the institution of the action, then service may be made by publication in accordance with the requirements of this subpart. Such service shall be made by publication of the summons, and of a statement as to the manner in which a copy of the pleading being served may be obtained, at least once a week for four successive weeks (1) in a newspaper published in the county where the action is pending, and (2) in a newspaper published in the county of the last known residence of the person to be served, if different from the county where the action is pending. If no newspaper is published in any such county, then the required publications shall be made in a newspaper published in an adjoining county. The service shall be complete thirty days after the first publication. When the residence of the person to be served is known, the party or officer making service shall also, on or before the date of the first publication, mail the summons and a copy of the pleading and other documents being served, postage prepaid, to that person at that person's place of residence. Service by publication and the return thereof may be made by the party procuring service or that party's attorney in the same manner as though made by an officer. The party or officer making service shall file an affidavit showing the manner and dates of the publication and mailing, and the circumstances warranting the utilization of the procedure authorized by this subpart, which shall be prima facie evidence of compliance herewith. A printed copy of the publication shall accompany the affidavit. If the residence of the party being served is unknown, and for that reason no mailing was made, the affidavit shall so state." (Emphasis added).



  • How long do I need to run an ad in the newspaper to get a 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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