Divorce Cases that Cross State Lines

Two people are about to divorce.   Where do they file the case? Well, that’s easy, in the county where they both are living, right?
Well, not always….
When two people are married, and living together and have been living there for awhile, yes, they do file in that county.   But some cases are not so clear.

Consider:

  1. He lives in one county, she lives in another. This has been going on for over 6 months.
  2. He lives in one state, she lives in another.
  3. The couple just moved from one state to another and have not established residency.
  4. One or both spouses regularly live in two locations, and it is unclear which is the primary residence.
  5. The divorce case was already filed, and is now on hold, in another county or state. Now they want to proceed.
  6. They live in two separate locations and each one files independently of the other. Which case proceeds to conclusion?
These cases are not as rare as you would think.  And, depending on the facts of the case, there may be more than one option on where to file the divorce.
In the least complicated of the above cases, it may be just a matter of timing. Assuming that each of the two people filed and each of them chose a correct location, then it may just be a matter of who filed first.   Other cases require legal research, and possibly a court hearing to decide. In the most complicated cases, two judges from two different courts may need to speak with each other at length to make the legal determination.
If you are in a complicated situation and are divorcing, or considering divorce, or your divorce was filed and is on “hold” somewhere other than where you now live, contact a family law attorney to help you understand what your options are and how to proceed.
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