Personal Injury Lawyer
If you and your spouse separated some time ago and now live in different states, you may wonder if divorce is still possible. It could be that you wanted to initiate divorce proceedings some time ago but you were not sure where to begin or think about the stress connected with seeing your spouse again, especially if your separation was due to infidelity or domestic violence. Divorce is still possible, however, and there are a few questions you can ask your attorney to get the process started.
1. What Are My State’s Requirements?
You may want to begin divorce proceedings in your own state, so it is wise to ask your lawyer about whether you meet the residency requirements. Each state has its own laws regarding divorce, and most require that you live where you file for at least six months or more. Your attorney can advise you about which laws might affect your ability to file and what kind of paperwork you need to complete.
2. What Kinds of Decisions Can I Make Legally?
In many states, the individual who files for divorce first has the right to make most of the decisions, including those regarding child support payments and how any remaining shared assets will be divided. As such, you may want to consider filing before your spouse to gain control of these important factors. This may also help you protect any assets you hold currently, including vehicles and retirement accounts.
3. Do I Gain Control of Child Custody?
If you share minor children with your spouse and they live with that individual in another state, child custody decisions will likely be made by courts in that location. In most cases, judges who preside over long-distance divorce proceedings act in children’s best interests in deciding custody matters. If you currently have custody of your kids, you can ask your attorney how to protect your parental rights.
4. How Soon Should I File?
If you satisfy your state’s residency requirements, you may want to file for divorce as soon as possible. This can be especially important if you know your spouse plans to file as well, as the divorce will take place in the state of the individual who gets the papers filed first. Your attorney can help you gather the information you need to begin the process and gain control over many of the decisions that might affect your future.
Filing for divorce when your spouse lives in another state can be a daunting challenge, but there is help available. Contact a divorce attorney, such as from Brandy Austin Law Firm, PLLC today for further assistance.