Often, when a couple wants to file for divorce, one of their first questions is, “Where do we do it?”
Are you supposed to file in the state where you were married, or if you moved, should you file in the state where you currently live? There are some couples who, upon separation, move to different homes, cities, or even different states. If you and your spouse are living in different states, where do you file for divorce?
Couples are not required to file for divorce in the state in which they were married. Instead, either spouse can file in the state in which they have established residency. Residency requirements vary by state. For example, North Carolina requires that either you or your spouse have been a resident of the state for at least six months prior to filing for divorce. If you and your spouse live apart, but you both live in North Carolina, you can file in either your county or your spouse can file in his or her county.
Serving an out-of-state spouse can be tricky, especially if you and your spouse are estranged and you’re not sure of his or her correct address. However, your spouse must be properly served the divorce papers in order to continue the case. Generally, you should request service of the divorce papers at your spouse’s last known address.
If he or she no longer resides there, you can serve “by publication,” meaning you publish a notification of intent to divorce in a local newspaper once a week for three weeks. North Carolina law states that service by publication may only be exercised if you have already diligently tried to serve your spouse in a more direct way, such as in person, by certified mail, or by designated delivery service.
Divorces can get complicated quickly, especially if the spouses live in two completely different states. A seasoned North Carolina divorce attorney can help alleviate your confusion by answering your questions and educating you on the local court rules. Attorney Jonathan Breeden of Breeden Law Offices has been guiding many North Carolina residents through the complex and difficult aspects of divorce for over 16 years. Contact Breeden Law Offices today to get assistance with your divorce. Call (919) 661-4970.
Call Breeden Law Office today:(919) 296-3978