Residency Requirements for Same-Sex Couples
If you are a same-sex couple and want to divorce, the procedure may differ from conventional couples. Most of the time, you must have been married in California. If you reside in another state, California can only end your marriage if your home state denies it.
Residency Requirements For Divorce
The state of California requires that residents seeking a divorce must meet physical residency requirements in the county where they wish to file. According to Family Code §2320, those filing for divorce in San Francisco County and Marin County must:
- Be a resident of California: 6 months before the petition is filed.
- Be a San Francisco County or Marin County resident: 3 months before the petition is filed.
Only one spouse must satisfy these residency requirements.
Divorce Waiting Period
According to Family Code §2339, you must wait a minimum of six months for your divorce to be finalized. This waiting period generally starts after the non-filing spouse has been served with divorce papers.
Grounds For Divorce In California
California is a “no-fault” divorce state, allowing divorcing spouses to end their marriages without blaming each other. This can be beneficial as it may help the couple approach the divorce more amicably and work together to negotiate fair terms without ill feelings.
If you do not need to prove fault, what are the grounds for divorce? There are two primary grounds: irreconcilable differences and incurable insanity.
This term is used when two spouses have differences that will not change over the course of their marriage. Irreconcilable differences are a broad way to describe any reason why a couple might want to get divorced.
If your spouse has a mental illness that cannot be cured, you can still get a divorce. You must have evidence of the mental illness and that it cannot be cured.
Scope Of Divorce Proceedings
If you and your spouse have decided to get a divorce, there are more than just emotions at stake. You will also need to agree to the terms of your split, which can include the following:
- Property division
- Child custody
- Child support and/or
- Alimony obligations
If you and your spouse cannot come to an understanding, the court system can get involved and make binding decisions. It is then required that you follow whatever the court decides.
Many issues can arise during a divorce, which is why it’s so important to have an experienced San Francisco family law attorney by your side. At Warren Major LLP, our attorneys are prepared to help you with any and all family law matters, including:
- Grandparent rights
- Move-away and relocations
- Military divorce
- Contested divorce
- Uncontested divorce
- High-net-worth divorce, and
- Domestic violence
Please do not hesitate to contact us today to set up your case assessment. We’ll be glad to look over your unique situation and work out which legal options will serve you best.
Starting Your Divorce
The first step is when one party, called the petitioner, files paperwork at their local courthouse. Afterward, the other spouse or partner must be given these same documents; this person is now known as the respondent. The respondent has 30 days to decide whether they would like to file a response.
After the parties agree to mediate, they must exchange financial information in a ”preliminary declaration of disclosure.”
Depending on the situation, a quick resolution or years of hearings and motions may pass until the final divorce is granted.
Divorce doesn’t have to deplete your bank account and consume all your time. You might be able to work out the terms of the divorce amicably with your spouse, which can then be filed with the court for enforceability down the road.
Keep in mind that courts are overwhelmed with cases and encourage parties to negotiate a settlement. Having an experienced attorney can help you make decisions during the process. Even if you cannot settle all issues, it is usually better to resolve as many issues with the opposing party before going to trial.
If you’re considering ending your marriage or registered domestic partnership, you may be eligible for a summary dissolution. A summary dissolution is available to couples married or in a partnership for less than five years, provided certain requirements are met. You can learn more about the process by reading this article or speaking with a member of our legal team.
Contact Our Team of Marin County Divorce Lawyers
Please contact our team if you are looking for representation in your divorce.