Misunderstandings are a part of life. In particular, the jargon and process of legal matters can be complicated and difficult to follow. When it comes to divorce, some New Jersey residents will be familiar with the difficulties of knowing exactly when everything is completely finalized.

A councilman in another state is currently facing some difficult questions. He married his first wife in 1981 and filed for divorce from her in 2006. At an unspecified point after the divorce papers were filed, the councilman’s attorney filed documents with the court stating that the whereabouts of the wife were unknown. In 2011, the case was dismissed by the judge due to concerns relating to procedure.

Undeterred, later in 2011 the councilman filed again for divorce. That case is still listed in the court records as pending, casting doubt over whether he is in fact divorced from his first wife. On his website, he claims to be married to a new partner, but he has declined to confirm the date or details of his marriage to his second wife.

As strange as it may seem, believing oneself to be officially single while still legally married is perhaps more common than one would think. New Jersey residents may think that filing divorce documents with the court means that is the end of the matter; however, there are a few more steps to take before one’s divorce is properly finalized. Seeking advice appropriate to one’s circumstances is important in order to avoid doubt over one’s marital status, so that one can move forward unencumbered into a happier future.

Source: Los Angeles Times, “L.A. City Councilman Curren Price faces questions over two marriages“, Dakota Smith, March 3, 2017