How to Process a Divorce while Overseas


The decision to get a divorce may be difficult to arrive at. Some people are still in the process of deciding on whether or not they want a divorce. Other people might have already decided, but are deciding on when to get it done. But for other people, sometimes their decision is only being held back by the fact that they’re overseas. While being in another country may sound like an obstacle to getting a divorce, it actually isn’t. As a matter of fact, it’s possible to actually get a divorce processed while you’re overseas.

The Process

Getting divorced from your spouse abroad may be a bit more complicated than it usually is. While the process is essentially the same, it’s the initiation of the divorce process that’s a little tedious. First, you must make sure that your primary residence for the past six months was in Texas. You must be currently a resident of the country that you’re in for at least 90 days. You also have to make sure that your spouse is also a current resident of the state of Texas. If these requirements are met, you can then start filing for a divorce. Your next move would be to contact the US Embassy in the country you’re in to help you find a local lawyer to help you with your divorce proceedings. After this, your divorce would proceed like any other Texas divorce.

If you and your spouse both live abroad, getting a divorce may still be possible. This depends entirely on whether or not the country you’re in allows divorces to take place and if you and your spouse are eligible to get a divorce there. If divorces are legal there and you’re both eligible, then you can both proceed to get a divorce. You just have to keep in mind that you will have to follow the divorce process there.

Recognition of A Foreign Divorce

If you get a divorce while you’re abroad and your spouse is in Texas, then you wouldn’t need to worry about whether that divorce is recognized. As for a divorce that you and your spouse both got abroad, its recognition will depend on the state where you reside. Generally speaking, the United States does recognize foreign divorces for as long as it was a mutual decision where both parties were heard and at least one person is still a resident of the US. As for the state of Texas, you will have to talk to a lawyer to see if the conditions of your divorce abroad meet the local laws. Your lawyer can then help you get your foreign divorce recognized.

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Mr. Hutton is a Divorce and Custody Lawyer based out of Round Rock, TX. His background is with child psychology at Arizona State University where he received a B.S. in 2006, and he continued this by working with the Children’s Right’s Clinic at the University of Texas School of Law where he received his J.D. in 2009. Throughout his practice, he has been a strong proponent of utilizing modern technology to improve his practice and the representation of his clients. He currently is the technology chair of CAFA of Travis County and is committed to improving and modernizing the practice of law in Texas. If you have any questions you can contact him at timothy.hutton@austintexaslegal.com

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