Spanish and Arabic translation available | 

How Does Residency Affect Military Divorce?

You have to file in the right state when you want a divorce. That’s a simple matter for many couples, but it can get complicated in a military divorce. Armed armed forces members can get moved to different bases or deployed overseas. You could be stuck if you’re unsure which state to file for divorce. Our Morris County, NJ divorce lawyers are prepared to help you out.

Which State Can You File Your Military Divorce In?

If you want to file for divorce from your military spouse, you may have a few options. You could file for divorce in:

  • The state where you currently live
  • The state where your military spouse is stationed
  • The state where your spouse claims legal residence

Most of the time, people file in a state where they and their spouse both lived for more than 91 days.

Can a Military Divorce Be a No-Fault or Fault Divorce?

This is one of the reasons the state that you file in matters. New Jersey does allow for fault-based divorce. Some other states do not. So, whether you want to file for a no-fault or fault-based divorce can matter here. Sometimes, filing for a fault-based divorce can be more trouble than it’s worth, but in other situations, it may be worthwhile to go through the extra work needed to build a case against your spouse.

The state you file in can also affect certain parts of your divorce agreement, like alimony or property division. Some states are community property states, while others follow a common law standard. Some states are more likely to award long or even permanent spousal support agreements, and others, like New Jersey, tend to favor shorter alimony pacts. For reasons like these, it’s a good idea to talk to a lawyer before picking out a state for your military divorce.

Do Military Spouses Have Any Legal Protections?

It is important to note that military spouses can be offered certain legal protections. One crucial rule to be aware of is that a default judgment won’t be issued against them if they do not respond to your divorce petition while they are on active duty or within 90 days of their active duty service. They can ask for a stay and take more time to prepare to respond to your filing papers.

Should I Hire a Lawyer?

No divorce is easy, but military divorces offer extra complications that can make fighting for a favorable outcome even more difficult. This is why we recommend hiring an attorney. They can answer your questions about where to file for divorce and what considerations you must make beforehand.

Schedule Your Consultation

When you are ready to file for divorce, don’t let any confusion about residency requirements stop you. Contact Townsend, Tomaio, and Newmark to schedule a consultation with our team. We can help you understand how to get this process started.