Where should I file for divorce if I’m in the military?

On Behalf of | Sep 9, 2019 | Divorce

A great part of life in a military family is moving around a lot. You may not even have a place that you really feel like you can call home if you have moved quite a bit. Despite this, when you go to file for a divorce, you will need to make sure that you do it in the correct location. Courts operate on the basis of jurisdiction. If you do not file in the right jurisdiction, then you may not be able to divorce in Washington.

Military OneSource explains that divorce laws regarding jurisdiction are a bit more lenient than they may be for other couples who want to divorce. Generally, all divorce laws agree that you can file for a divorce in the state in which you or your spouse is currently stationed. So, if you or your spouse are stationed in Washington, you may file here.

However, if you have a home state where you used to live and that you claim legal residence in, you may file in that state instead. If you are not living with your spouse who is in the military, then you may file in the state in which you live. Your military spouse may file in the state in which he or she lives as well. So, you have options when it comes to where to file.

One note if you are stationed in a foreign country, it is always best to wait until you can file in the U.S. This is because some foreign divorces are not recognized under U.S. law. So, if you file there, you may have to file again here. This information is for education and is not legal advice.