South Carolina Marriage Laws
20-1-540 - Adjudication of presumed death
When a person has been married in this State or was living with his or her spouse in this State after marriage and the one has left the other and has been absent from the other for seven years, without the latter knowing or hearing anything about such absent spouse, the abandoned spouse may by an action in the court of common pleas or other court of competent jurisdiction serve the absent spouse by publication in the manner provided in Sections 15-9-710 and 15-9-740 and bring the issue as to such facts before the court of common pleas or other court of competent jurisdiction. And when it shall be satisfactorily established to the presiding judge of such court or to a jury on an issue sent to the jury by the judge that such absent spouse has not been heard from for seven years the complaining spouse shall have an adjudication of the issue and such absent spouse shall be conclusively presumed dead in so far as any children or kindred resulting from any marriage of the abandoned spouse during such absence may be concerned, notwithstanding the fact that such absent spouse may later appear alive. The reappearance or return of the absent spouse shall not alter such adjudication or invalidate or upset any subsequent marriage entered into by the abandoned spouse.◀︎ Back to South Carolina Marriage Laws ︎︎︎︎︎◀︎ Back to Marriage Laws Home
HISTORY: 1962 Code Section 20-44; 1952 Code Section 20-44; 1942 Code Section 8568; 1932 Code Section 8568; Civ. C. '22 Section 5533; Civ. C. '12 Section 3754; Civ. C. '02 Section 2661; G. S. 2029; R. S. 2160; 1712 (2) 203; 1946 (44) 1486.