​ሕግንና ደንብን በተመለከተ እርዳታ ማግኘት ይፈልጋሉን? - Amharic | هل تحتاج لمساعدة قانونية؟ - Arabic | ܤܢܝܼܩܵܐ ܝ݇ܘ̤ܬ ܠܗܲܝܵܪܬܵܐ ܩܵܢܘܿܢܵܝܬܵܐ؟ - Assyrian | Need Legal Help? - Auslan | Treba li vam pravna pomoc? - Bosnian | Burmese â Need Legal Help? | 需要法律帮助吗? - Chinese Simplified | 需要法律幫助嗎? - Chinese Traditional | Trebate li pravnu pomoć? - Croatian | ضرورت به کمک قانونی دارید؟ - Dari | Wïc Kuɔɔny në Wɛ̈t Löŋ? - Dinka | آیا به کمک حقوقی نیاز دارید؟ - Farsi | Gadreva na Veivuke Vakalawa? - Fijian | Kailangan ninyo ba ng tulong na panglegal? - Filipino | Besoin d’aide juridique ? - French | Χρειάζεστε βοήθεια σε νομικά ζητήματα - Greek | क्या आपको कानूनी सलाह चाहिए? - Hindi | Butuhkan Bantuan dalam Masalah Hukum? - Indonesian | Hai bisogno di assistenza legale? - Italian | ត្រូវការជំនួយលើបញ្ហាផ្លូវច្បាប់ឬទេ? - Khmer | 법적인 도움이 필요하십니까? - Korean | Ви треба ли помош со правни работи? - Macedonian | कानूनी सहयोग चाहिएको छ? - Nepalese | Necessita de ajuda com questões jurídicas? - Portuguese | Вам нужна юридическая помощь? - Russian | E Manaomia Fesoasoani i Mea Tau Tulafono? - Samoan | а ли вам треба помоћ у правним питањима? - Serbian | Ma u baahan tahay Caawimmad xagga sharciga ah?- Somali | ¿Necesita ayuda con cuestiones jurídicas? - Spanish | சட்ட உதவி தேவையா? - Tamil | ท่านต้องการความช่วยเหลือทางด้านกฎหมายไหม? - Thai | Fiema’u ha tokoni Fakalao? - Tongan | Yasal Danışmaya İhtiyacınız mı var? - Turkish | Cần Được Giúp Đỡ Về Luật Pháp? - Vietnamese |

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Applying for Substituted or Dispensation of Service Orders

The rules of service are very strict.  If you can’t serve your Application for Divorce on your spouse, you must ask the Court for permission to:

  • serve them in a different way (substituted service), or
  • not serve them at all (dispensation of service). 

To do this, you must file an Application in a Case and an Affidavit. You can file your application online or at a Court registry.  

You don’t have a pay a fee to file an Application in a Case. 

Once your application is processed by the registry, you will receive a hearing date. This is usually the same date as the divorce hearing. You must attend this hearing.   

Alert IconIf you don’t serve your spouse, and you don’t apply for substituted or dispensation of service orders, the Court may adjourn or dismiss your application. 

Alert IconAsking the Court for substituted or dispensation of service orders may delay your divorce application. 

Alert IconIf you are concerned about your residential address being disclosed to your spouse or are afraid to contact them, you should get legal advice.

Applying for Substituted Service Orders

If you can’t serve your spouse by hand or by post but are still able to contact them, you must ask the Court for permission to serve them by a different method. This may include serving them:

  • via Facebook or email
  • through a friend or relative of your spouse
  • by placing a notice in a newspaper, for example, the Daily Telegraph.

Alert IconIf the Court is not satisfied that you have taken all reasonable steps to find your spouse, it may adjourn your application and ask you to try again.   

Step-by-step guide iconStep by step guide: Applying for Substituted Service Orders

Applying for Dispensation of Service Order

If you don’t know where your spouse is and you have not been able to contact them, you must ask the Court to make an order dispensing with service. 

The Court will only make this Order if it is satisfied you have made all reasonable attempts to contact and locate your spouse. This includes trying to contact them via email, social media, through friends and family, or their employer. 

Alert IconIf the Court thinks you have not made all reasonable attempts to contact and locate your spouse, it may adjourn your application and ask you to try again.

You will need strong evidence for the Court to dispense with service. You should consider substituted service first.

If the Court thinks there is a way you can serve your spouse, it may make Substituted Service Orders instead of Dispensation of Service Orders. 

Step-by-step guide iconStep by step guide: Applying for Dispensation of Service Order