Greetings. Yes, you can file for divorce, alimony, and equitable distribution (if the rest of your facts are ok) and serve your spouse with the papers by PUBLICATION…if you were in North Carolina. Now, in NY, I have no idea what you will have to do. Best bet - consult an attorney there and don’t let this linger on. Many, many clients wished they had never stayed married to a disappeared spouse when they found someone new and wanted to marry them, but had to wait months on the divorce.
On the other hand, if there is a potential for your spouse to earn more than you, you could always stay married for 10 years so you can claim under his social security benefits. Best of luck.
Janet L. Fritts
Attorney at Law
4101 Lake Boone Trail, Suite 200
Raleigh, North Carolina 27607
The response posted above is based upon the limited factual information made available and is not intended as a full and complete response to the question. The only reliable manner to obtain complete and adequate legal advice is to consult with an attorney, fully explain your situation, and allow the attorney sufficient opportunity to research the applicable law and facts required to render an accurate opinion. The basic information provided above is intended as a public service but a full discussion with an attorney should be undertaken before taking any action.