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  1. #1

    Default Divorce After Becoming the Resident of Another State

    My question involves a marriage in the state of: NY

    I left my husband due to domestic violence and fled from NY to CA. Out here I have an order of protection and sole custody of our children. My lawyer says I cannot file for divorce out here even after meeting the residency requirement now due to the fact that my husband has no ties whatsoever to this state. She says he would need to agree to CA holding jurisdiction. So I reached out to him and due to him not liking the results of the custody hearing he said he wouldn't agree and that I couldn't have any of the property that I left behind when I left. What do I need to do? Do I have to retain another lawyer in NY and proceed in NY or can I in some way proceed from here? I

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
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    Default Re: Divorce After Becoming the Resident of Another State

    Unfortunately in order to get a divorce, property division, and permanent custody orders you are likely to need to do that in NY since you need to have a court that has jurisidction over your husband. I recommend that you consult a divorce attorney or two in NY about this.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Divorce After Becoming the Resident of Another State

    Quote Quoting EShear0715
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    My question involves a marriage in the state of: NY

    I left my husband due to domestic violence and fled from NY to CA. Out here I have an order of protection and sole custody of our children. My lawyer says I cannot file for divorce out here even after meeting the residency requirement now due to the fact that my husband has no ties whatsoever to this state. She says he would need to agree to CA holding jurisdiction. So I reached out to him and due to him not liking the results of the custody hearing he said he wouldn't agree and that I couldn't have any of the property that I left behind when I left. What do I need to do? Do I have to retain another lawyer in NY and proceed in NY or can I in some way proceed from here? I
    What do you mean by meeting the residency requirement? Be specific.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Divorce After Becoming the Resident of Another State

    Quote Quoting llworking
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    What do you mean by meeting the residency requirement? Be specific.
    I'm not seeing where there is any confusion on what is meant. California, like most states, requires that at least one of the two parties in the divorce action be a resident at the time of filing the divorce and for some period prior to that. In California, the residency rule is this:

    California residency requirements for divorce

    For married persons to get a divorce:

    You MUST meet California’s residency requirements. Either you or your spouse must have lived in:

    • California for the last 6 months, AND
    • The county where you plan to file the divorce for the last 3 months.


    If you and your spouse have lived in California for at least 6 months but in different counties for at least 3 months, you can file in either county.

    See the California Courts page on divorce and separation.

    She evidently has lived in California for at least the last 6 months, thus making it possible for the divorce action to be filed there. In other words, that meets a key requirement for subject matter jurisdiction. But there is also the matter of personal jurisdiction. You always need both subject matter and personal jurisdiction. And that's where the problem comes in. The husband evidently has no ties to California and thus the courts there cannot exercise personal jurisdiction over him.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Divorce After Becoming the Resident of Another State

    That makes more sense to me now. It was not well explained by my lawyer here. Thank you

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Divorce After Becoming the Resident of Another State

    Quote Quoting EShear0715
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    That makes more sense to me now. It was not well explained by my lawyer here. Thank you
    I'm glad my explanation was helpful. Some lawyers are very good at much of what they do but not very good at explaining legal concepts in plain English. Yours may be one of those.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Divorce After Becoming the Resident of Another State

    Quote Quoting EShear0715
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    My lawyer says I cannot file for divorce out here even after meeting the residency requirement now due to the fact that my husband has no ties whatsoever to this state.
    Then you might consider looking for a new lawyer who better understands these basic concepts. A California court has jurisdiction to grant a petition for dissolution of marriage (a divorce) as long as it has jurisdiction over at least one of the parties to the marriage. You are apparently a resident of California and would be submitting to the court's jurisdiction by filing for divorce, so that's all that's needed. The court need not have personal jurisdiction over both spouses in order to order the dissolution. However, absent some basis for jurisdiction over the non-resident, the California court would not be able to award spousal support or make binding orders concerning property not located in California. If those things don't matter to you, then there's no reason why you can't file for divorce in California.


    Quote Quoting EShear0715
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    What do I need to do? Do I have to retain another lawyer in NY and proceed in NY or can I in some way proceed from here?
    If you want alimony/spousal support and orders concerning property located outside California, then you'll have to file in New York.

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