Divorce Solutions

Question #5

Please Help: I’m a 39-year-old American male who married a Filipino woman in the Philippines in June of 1997. After the marriage, I went back to the US, and my wife stayed in the Philippines while the immigration paperwork was processed. Everything seemed to be going great until the final step of the immigration process when my wife applied for her US Passport in June of 1998. Since I sent her the money for the passport and Visa (approx. $600), I haven’t heard from her, and when I call her family’s house, they act as if they never heard of her (or me for that matter). I’m afraid what has happened is that once my wife got her US passport, she dumped me, somehow entered the US, and is doing God knows what. So my question is, how can I get this marriage annulled? Do I have to go back to the Philippines, or can I do it in the US? Any help would be much appreciated. 

You have not indicated in which State you are presently residing. Therefore I cannot tell you with certainty what the residency requirements are, which you will need for your State to accept jurisdiction over this divorce matter. It will not be necessary to return to be the Philippines to get your divorce. But it will be much more difficult if you cannot locate your spouse and serve her with the divorce papers. You should consider doing a person search that may be able to locate her in the US. An annulment may be a possibility, but you will have to prove fraud to succeed, which proof may be difficult for you to provide.

I suggest that you proceed for a regular divorce based on abandonment and make every effort to locate your spouse.

Good luck!

Leonard M. Weiner, Esq./Divorce Solutions