George Zimmerman can be served with divorce papers by publication

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Good morning:

George Zimmerman can be served with divorce papers by publication.

Florida Statutes 49.021: Service of process by publication, upon whom.—Where personal service of process or, if appropriate, service of process under s. 48.194 cannot be had, service of process by publication may be had upon any party, natural or corporate, known or unknown, including:

(1) Any known or unknown natural person, and, when described as such, the unknown spouse, heirs, devisees, grantees, creditors, or other parties claiming by, through, under, or against any known or unknown person who is known to be dead or is not known to be either dead or alive.

When a lawyer representing a party to a lawsuit, or a party representing himself without a lawyer, cannot serve a summons and the complaint or petition on the opposing party because he cannot locate the opposing party, the law permits service to be accomplished by publishing a copy of the summons and the complaint in the local newspaper every day for 90 successive days.

Publication in the Orlando Sentinel would suffice.

At the end of the 90 days, the lawyer must file an affidavit of service by publication attaching the summons and complaint or petition and describing the efforts undertaken to find the opposing party.

Service by publication will not be deemed effective, unless all reasonable efforts to locate the opposing party were attempted without success.

In the typical case, the party attempting to obtain service on the non-responding party, goes to court to obtain an order of default after the time period within which to respond to the complaint or petition expires, which is usually 20 days and starts running after the 90 day period for service by publication.

The purpose for requiring all reasonable efforts to serve the opposing party in person before resorting to service by publication is to prevent a party from obtaining a default judgment against another party without actual notice to them.

Someone in the comments mentioned the possibility that Shellie’s lawyer, Kelly Sims, might be able to serve Mark O’Mara with the divorce papers, however, the attorney typically has to agree to accept service for the client and I doubt he would agree to do that since he announced that he will not represent him on the divorce and may not know where he is living or even be in contact with him.

My impression is GZ has refused to assist O’Mara to recoup his costs in the criminal case and O’Mara no longer wants to have anything to do with him with the single exception of the pending NBC lawsuit that probably is not worth anything, given the acquittal.


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92 Responses to George Zimmerman can be served with divorce papers by publication

  1. acemayo says:

    At GZ trail people that gave testimony how meek and mild manner
    he and how well they knew him one say he could be my son.
    GZ was the sheep and TM was the big bad wolf.

  2. colin black says:

    The city has already paid Brown’s family $550,000 in exchange for their agreement not to further pursue civil litigation.



    Just as the home owners association at the retreat paid Trayvons Parents an undisclosed amount of money..

    Floridas sends the message to AA victims of random murders by white LE or even eejits whom think there LE In there delusional minds.

    Hey we will give you money for your loved ones murder just don’t expect those responable to face criminal justice.

  3. acemayo says:

    Remember his wife said she never saw him mad or in an
    argument ………………..

    • Malisha says:

      Whose wife never saw him mad or in an argument?

      • jm says:

        ShelLIE testified under oath she never saw GZ angry.

        From transcript of testimony from bond hearing.

        DE LA RIONDA: And I gather my follow-up question regarding that is have you ever seen him angry or do you think he has — let me ask first thing. Have you ever seen him angry?

        S. ZIMMERMAN: No, I haven’t.

        DE LA RIONDA: You don’t think he has anger management problems?

        S. ZIMMERMAN: No, I do not.

        • lurker says:

          Well, fortunately she doesn’t need grounds to divorce him in Florida. She just has to say that she no longer wishes to be married to the man.

          • jm says:

            lurker I just posted this link in response to question posed by Malisha.

            I remembered her testimony at bond hearing where she did lie about the money and apparently she lied about not seeing him angry because she told interviewer she did indeed see GZ angry prior to his murdering Trayvon.

            To me SZ plus the Zimmerman Klan are lying cons who knew what GZ was capable of and they protected him from 2nd degree murder imprisonment with their lies (with help from the prosecution).

          • Malisha says:

            Oh if she wants to change her story now and say that he raged at her constantly and terrorized her and blah blah blah she’ll just say that she was so intimidated by him at the time that she said that because she had been “brainwashed” to say whatever he wanted. If you think the world of criminal law is full of fraud and lies and court-encouraged dishonesty, you ain’t seen nothin’ till you see domestic relations law.

  4. That was the initial route I was taking when I was suddenly abandoned by my (now ex) husband and the first thought I had upon hearing the news about Zimmerman. Thank you for sharing this option.

  5. lady2soothe says:


    Florida Cop Kills Man By Running Him Over With His Car, Will Not Be Charged

    New video released by the family of a man killed by police in DeLand, Fla., shows how an officer ran him over with his car as he ran through a vegetable garden. The family is calling for an independent investigation by state and federal agencies, after a grand jury decision last week not to file criminal charges against officer James Harris.

    Marlon Brown, who was 38 when he died in May, was being pulled over for an alleged seatbelt violation when he got out of the car and started running. Officers were following him in a police car when Harris sped to the scene from behind. The released video shows Harris’ car speeding toward Brown — passing the other police car by. When Brown tripped and fell, and the police car kept going.

    An internal police investigation found that Harris violated the Department’s chase policy, and he was fired. But the grand jury found there was not enough evidence to criminally prosecute Harris for vehicular homicide. Brown’s family points out that the jury had not seen video of the incident, and questions the testimony of the medical examiner, Shiping Bao, who was fired after his testimony in Trayvon Martin’s case. Bao said the car didn’t strike Brown and that Brown had no broken bones, but that he was pinned underneath the car and suffocated.

    “This was an execution in a vegetable garden,” the Brown family attorney, Benjamin Crump, said upon release of the video. “The officer came at Marlon with such velocity that … he could not have stopped.” Crump was also the attorney for Trayvon Martin’s family.

    Prosecutors chose to bring the case before a grand jury, which decides in secret whether an individual should be charged. But that was not their only option. Prosecutors could have also made their own unilateral decision, or used a coroner’s inquest — a public hearing at which evidence is presented without the shroud of a grand jury proceeding.

    A grand jury, like other juries, is comprised of community members, who could have been biased if they had known that Brown had a criminal history. (Brown is being described in some news coverage as a “known felon.”) Under the rules of evidence applicable to a trial, the prior convictions of a defendant or a victim are typically not admissible to prove a person’s character because of this potential for bias, although they may be admissible to prove other elements of the case. Grand juries, however, are subject to relaxed rules of evidence, and there is no mechanism for enforcing those rules, as no judge or defense attorney is present to object. George R. “Bob” Dekle, a former prosecutor who leads the University of Florida law school’s criminal prosecution clinic, told ThinkProgress he likely would not have considered Brown’s prior convictions relevant and would not have submitted them to a grand jury. He acknowledged, however, that grand jurors frequently ask the prosecutor about prior convictions. He would tell them it is not relevant but would offer to provide the information if they insist on knowing it, in order to “maintain a working relationship with the grand jury.”

    Dekle also told the Daytona Beach News-Journal that a prosecution for vehicular homicide would be “iffy” and that the use of a grand jury would give a prosecutor an indication of how a jury was likely to decide. Others interviewed by the newspaper said prosecutors should have used a coroner’s inquest instead, to ensure public accountability.

    The city has already paid Brown’s family $550,000 in exchange for their agreement not to further pursue civil litigation.

  6. lady2soothe says:

    In a local version of Dancing with the Stars, Mark O’Mara [ya know, George Zimmerman’s (ex) lawyer] will put on his dancing shoes and play a role we have definitely never seen him in before.


  7. kllypyn says:

    Hr never thinks anything out. He does what evere he wants because he thinks he can. Why? because people are always willing to lie to get him out of trouble.That’s why he never takes responcibillty for anything he does,neither he or his brother. It’s always someone else’s fault.

  8. Malisha says:

    I think Fogen is one of those people who perpetually carries on about who’s trying to do him harm. He’s full of stories about people being after him, trying to kill him, blah blah blah. He thinks a kid walking home from the store is “real suspicious” and within a half hour he catapults himself into a totally faked-up horror story murder complete with “homie” and “exploding heads.” He’s afraid of the boogieman big-time and he is his own worst enemy. NOW he’s probably in hiding because he has found that the only place he really fits in is — is — is — hiding. And now, there’s noplace he really belongs — except in prison — and maybe by Jeralyn’s side as she blazes her trails through a new fantasy world of “the left.” More like “the left-behind” or “his left behind.”

    Hey Fogen, Shrimping much recently?

    • ks says:

      Hi Malisha, what’s going on in “Talk Left” world? regarding all of the recent developments with GZ and Co? I can imagine that Jeralyn is putting her hands over her ears and shouting “la,la,la…I can’t hera you” while Armando is laughing his a$$ off saying “I told you so!”.

  9. zhickel says:

    These days, as fewer people buy actual paper newspapers, is it acceptable to publish the documents online and if so, where?

    Searching for an answer I found this site which summarises the requirements of a ‘diligent search’.

    The requirements are onerous, including contacting all known family members of the missing spouse. Are you reading this Robert Jr?

    Once more, not a well thought out course of action by George.

    • You’re right. It isn’t well thought out.

      He cannot evade service. He can only harm himself in the eyes of others by pursuing this annoying and petulant little game of Where’s Waldo.

      • jm says:

        Professor says: “He cannot evade service. He can only harm himself in the eyes of others by pursuing this annoying and petulant little game of Where’s Waldo.”

        I don’t get why GZ would want to evade being served. He left ShelLIE according to her interview, only staying in the home 4-5 days after the trial was over. I would like to know what lengths ShelLIE’s attorney went to in order to serve him before going public. There is something about Kelly Sims that makes me think he is a publicity seeker (after his batman interview) and trying to get fame through the Zimmerman name. Who is paying him for his service as ShelLIE’s attorney?

        • jm says:

          Sorry, I just read your post about guessing ShelLIE’s father paying her defense and divorce bills after I posted the above question about who pays Kelly Sims.

        • I imagine he wants to do the rejecting rather than be rejected.

          • Soulcatcher says:

            I agree, he thinks he’s the one in control. He thinks she should sit at home and be the good wifey, while he takes himself a little vacation screwing around on her. He thinks he the man, everbody wants him, and makes her feal like nobody wants her, tearing down her self esteem. I’m sure he’s pissed, because she didn’t ask his permission before she filed.

        • Trained Observer says:

          Just because the murdering dufus took off on a road trip after his acquital doesn’t mean he “left” SheLie in a sense of declaring the beginning of ending their marriage. She never said he “left” her in that sense.

          As for being a publicity seeker, Kelly Sims for the most part stayed out of the spotlight except for perjury case hearings for more than a year

          • jm says:

            TO says: “Just because the murdering dufus took off on a road trip after his acquital doesn’t mean he “left” SheLie in a sense of declaring the beginning of ending their marriage. She never said he “left” her in that sense.”

            I have no idea what could have been ShelLIE’s tipping point after she after she plotted and planned to hide money from the court and brazen enough to lie about it under oath and then stood by her murdering man by showing up in court every day, not to mention trying to get Tracy Martin thrown out of the courtroom.

            I don’t really care to argue about ShelLIE’s motivation. She just happened to mention his absence from the home in an interview so I thought it might be this fact that gave ShelLIE the message GZ did not want to be with her any more which led to the divorce filing.

          • pat deadder says:

            On the jailhouse tapes Shelley said to fogen After this is over you will have a good life and he replied no WE will have a good life to which she did not reply.
            I am beginning to believe that when she left the night before the murder she had no intention of ever going back.I think his family intimidated her to be at the trial and when she committed perjury wasn’t she with his family.
            I really think if she tells all her life could be in danger,as fogen’s family seem very dangerous and have some kind of influence.Maybe she could be in danger now.

          • jm says:

            “I am beginning to believe that when she left the night before the murder she had no intention of ever going back.I think his family intimidated her to be at the trial and when she committed perjury wasn’t she with his family.”

            Nothing would have helped ShelLIE more than to have told the truth about GZ when questioned under oath and helped to put GZ in prison. I doubt very much the family would have that much power over her to cause her to lie. She isn’t a victim. She is a participant in the lies that helped acquit GZ. If her family is supporting her now, they would have supported her previously if she would have told the truth.

            ShelLIE is incapable of telling the truth, caught in a tangle of her own lies.

        • lurker says:

          I don’t think he’s avoiding service as much as avoiding Shellie. He’s on his own now that O’Mara has cut him loose (well, he and the 300# bodyguard) and I don’t think that thinking things through is his forte. He has figured out that his typical behavior vis a vis Shellie ain’t gonna fly no more–and is likely to draw the po-po, followed by the media. So–he just ain’t gonna tell her where he is.

          And his family will play along out of the importance of maintaining the illusion that the whole world wants to kill George–because of NBC. Danger! Danger! Will Robinson.

          • jm says:

            lurker says: “….. I don’t think he’s avoiding service as much as avoiding Shellie…; And his family will play along out of the importance of maintaining the illusion that the whole world wants to kill George……”

            I agree lurker.

            GZ has allegedly (per ShelLIE) been avoiding her since he was acquitted.

            The family will go along with it because of their arrogance and pride. I think in reality they would like to kill George for the disgrace he has brought on them, especially mother Z.

    • jm says:

      “Once more, not a well thought out course of action by George.”

      I wonder where ShelLIE’s attorney actually looked for GZ to serve him. I mean maybe he isn’t actually hiding but just no longer at ShelLIE’s father’s home.

      • Rachael says:

        Well then where else would he be? You think he should serve him at work? ppffffttttt

        • jm says:

          I don’t know where else GZ would be but certainly not her father’s house because ShelLIE herself said he only spent 4-5 days there after he was acquitted which is why I believe she felt the need to divorce him.

          You couldn’t serve ShelLIE or GZ at work. (I do wonder how ShelLIE supports herself financially and what she does 24 hours a day with nothing to do.)

          I am thinking GZ is still getting support from people who think he is a hero for killing a black kid. Wonder how he spends his days. Gun practice?

          • lurker says:

            Not giving Shellie, or Sims, his address is just a control move. He’s a rabid control freak.

            Remember how he chain locked his “special” chair to the desk to keep others from sitting in it?

        • Mojo says:

          Rachael: “Well then where else would he be?”

          I’d start searching the 24-hour, all you can eat buffets within a 30 mile radius.

  10. Malisha says:

    Is part of Shellie’s probation to tell the truth in court for a while?

    In FL do you need to list your last 2 years’ addresses to get a divorce?

    Wouldn’t that be interesting?

  11. annahkonda says:

    He could be holed up with his new love until he decides to run .After a while, Fogen won’t have any bridges left to burn.

    • colin black says:

      I don’t know if it is a new woman in his life .
      Its been said that its his former fiancé the one who he had duelling restraining order battle with.

      Im not sure one thing for certain theres no love involved at least not on foggages side.

      Way to treat a date hey you fancy comeing over to a confrontation with my ex shellie an watch whilst I do my ape shit routine.
      Im packing a loaded pistol by the way Its not that Im happy to see you.

      • Malisha says:

        Unfortunately, there are even women who would go for that. I wouldn’t be surprised if he got hisself a delusional self-righteous racist woman who was just thrilled to be part of the theatrical new Mrs. Internationalasshole reality show. And I keep thinking Jeralyn’s dialing his number … 555, to me to me.

  12. Trained Observer says:

    With the media reporting editorially on Fogen’s MIA status for being served, combined with the required 90 days of legal ads, that’s another card in Kelly Sims’ hand.

    When (and if) Fogen lines up another lawyer to handle his divorce, it can’t be claimed that Fogen didn’t know he was wanted or that the lawyer didn’t know. … The whole world knows.

    With or without a lawyer by his side, Fogen eventually will find himself formally separted and legally divorced no matter what.

    By playing it like the chicken pooper that he is, Fogen may find terms of the divorce far less in his favor. Maybe he’ll get stuck with what normally would be SheLie’s share of their debt.

    Another happy thought for the day.

    • Trained Observer says:

      formally separated

    • Normally, marital debt is a joint and several obligation. This means the creditor can go after the full amount of the debt from either of the former spouses.

    • Girlp says:

      Who’s going to take him as a client knowing they won’t get paid.

      • No one will. He will have to represent himself or settle for a default judgment stitching him up by Kelly Sims.

        • jm says:

          “He will have to represent himself or settle for a default judgment stitching him up by Kelly Sims.”

          Being that ShelLIE has not had a job for years, obviously with no income and her parents appear to not be financially doing well with homes in and out of foreclosure, who is paying her bills, legal and otherwise?

          • My guess is probably her father.

          • jm says:

            I thought ShelLIE’s parents were in trouble financially with foreclosures. Wonder what he is charging for the perjury and the divorce.

          • Rachael says:

            Attorneys can be very expensive and when you pay them instead of mortgage, well – the bank doesn’t care.

          • Trained Observer says:

            Just because SheLie’s parents have property hanging on a thread between them and the bank with foreclosure on the horizon, doesn’t mean her parents are totally insolvent or possibly anywhere near so.

            Lots of people now underwater with property they bought on spec are letting the parcels go to foreclosure because it makes busines sense (as in not throwing good money after bad), not because they are personally on the bring of bankrutpcy.

          • Trained Observer says:


  13. O/T: The Washington Post just reported,

    NAIROBI — Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday night declared that the four-day-long siege of an upscale mall in the capital by Islamist militants has ended with the deaths of five militants and 11 in custody.

    He announced three days of mourning for the more than 60 people killed in the attack, a death toll that is expected to rise with the recovery of more bodies from the mall, he said.

    • Trained Observer says:

      On Letterman last night, Bill Clinton said this tragedy was especially personal to him … just six weeks ago he had been photographed with one of the now deceased victims.

  14. colin black says:

    The foggage one is delusinal this we know .So given his delusions of grandeur an importance as a cause celibre .

    You would think its in his best intrests ti facilitate the divorce with Shellie as soon as possible.If they have no assets at this point an its uncontested he could be freee an single an ready to mingle rapido.

    Instead by avoiding the papers an drawing out the process any moneys he could earn would be liable assets to be claimed by his Wife.

    If he stops being an ass he could be out of the marriage with no financial liability as theres no children involved .

    He prefers to kill Children than produce them.

    Then he would be able to cash in on his deluded fame an anything he earns would be his.

    Never going to happen though either the quickie divorce or the fame an fortune he envisions in his delusions.

    • Boyd says:

      yes , delusional except that joker has an amazing ability to avoid jail time for violent acts, and make money for doing it.

      A criminal mastermind

    • Malisha says:

      Colin, it is impossible for Fogan to have delusions of grandeur.

      He has delusions of adequacy.

      • pat deadder says:

        Malisha says He has delusions of adequacy.LOL.
        I was wondering can’t they find out where he is by his bank withdrawals.I work in a bank we could if necessary find where a transaction was done.

  15. Boyd says:

    The defense fund web site is still up. I don’t know what to make of that, has to be intentional. It says MOM has control

    • colin black says:

      Good luck with that he got stiffed by his client so is trying to recoup his losses.

      Doesn’t he realise his new gig as a talking head an his raised profile is his reward for representing an freeing a Child MURDERER an still a walking danger .

      Talk about wanting his cake an eating it now he wants extra iceing as well

      Greedy Bastard springs to mind.

    • Regardless, I do not believe Kelli Sims can assume he has effectively served GZ by serving MOM, unless MOM agrees to accept service on GZ’s behalf.

      Sims would not be complaining, if MOM had agreed to do that.

      The website remains up and running because GZ owes approximately $200 K in costs and the State hasn’t indicated how much of that it’s going to pay.

      • That’s exactly what MOM gets. I find him to be a particularly nasty, person. Towards the end of the press conference after the verdict he made a thinly veiled threat against Trayvon’s parents to further slander their child’s name if they went after George in civil court. I could not believe the his gall.

  16. a2nite says:

    I wish these stupid evil people would crawl under a rock and disappear.

  17. colin black says:

    He is sueing them for editing a tape to make him sound raceist.

    He himself used an edited tape to prove his point he edited out the fucking khoons underbreath whisper.

    So he edited a tape removeing a raceial slur to prove provenance that the media edited a tape to make him appear raceist?

    You couldn’t make this stupid eejits behaveiour up.

    • racerrodig says:

      That part where he “forgets to use the “…fucking coons” line is a real hoot. They use his words and his only and the broadcast says these are “excerpts” from his call.

      He says here’s my call……but just happens to edit out the most damning part.

      What a jackass. You are spot on about making this up. Do any of them actually think nobody will contest anything ???

  18. jm says:

    What a nasty bad joke all the players are in this Zimmerman divorce. Idiots, including but not limited to GZ and ShelLIE.

  19. Trained Observer says:

    Professor — Unless I’m misinterpreting, your comment casts a glorious light on the NBC lawsuit. You are suggesting, it seems, that given the not guilty verdict, Fogen’s chances of prevailing with his suit against NBC (claiming he’d been wrongfully maligned or harmed by the broadcast) are notably reduced, compared to however slim the odds were prior to the criminal trial or if the murdering pig had been convicted.

    You have made my day on that happy point alone!

    • Yes, you are not misinterpreting what I said.

      What are his damages, since he was not convicted?

      • I suppose he could claim that he would not have been charged but for the conduct of NBC’s employees attempting to misrepresent him as a racist.

        I don’t see that argument going anywhere since he’s the one who said “fucking coons,” and Judge Lester ruled there was probable cause to support the charge.

        Lawsuit looks frivolous to me, but it’s pending before Judge Nelson.

    • racerrodig says:

      His own words were used and the broadcast says “…here are excerpts from that call…” That alone would get this tossed in NJ. And as the esteemed Professor said, he was acquitted. From what I gather Fogen may likely be responsible for NBC’s legal fee’s being he jumped the gun and this is a frivolous lawsuit.

      Not 1 person I’ve ever talked to about this has said they got a different impression about Fogen from the NBC broadcast.

      He can’t claim any legal fees as damages since he was arrested for murder and not based on any news broadcast.

      He’s taking the position as does the whole klan, “I don’t like what you say about me, so here’s a lawsuit” when in fact this is a case of “I just wish they’d let me do anything i want, to anybody I want, anytime I want……and don’t bother me with details like “Murder Charges” and such. These arrests are just such a hassle. Then I have to let my hair grow in, then shave it for that skin head look again.”

      • Malisha says:

        “I just wish they’d let me do anything I want, to anybody I want, anytime I want…”

        They do. That’s the point. That’s how we got to the place we are in, in the world, and the great “respect” the civilized world has for us and our brand of freedom and justice.

  20. I suppose this would show up in the Orlando Sentinel then?

  21. Shirking Violet says:

    The only thing Georgie wants to be served is breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Hiding like the cockroach he is.

    Glad you reminded us of the publication option, Professor. I’m certainly no fan of Shellie’s but in this case, I’m rooting for her.

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