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Can I file for my divorce in another state?

Where you or your spouse choose to file for divorce may greatly impact the way that your divorce plays out for a number of reasons. Not only do different states or even counties within a state differ in the laws that govern divorce, the spouse that chooses to file often sets the tone for how the divorce process plays out. If you are considering filing for divorce, then an experienced attorney can help you examine how filing in one state over another may affect your particular divorce.

Texas is a state with laws that vary significantly from most other states, because it is one of only a few states that continue to use community property rules when going about property division in a divorce. In very simple terms, community property rules dictate that divorcing couples should divide any assets or debts that count marital property "equally" rather than "equitably." This means that couples have less flexibility when it comes to deciding how much of each asset or liability each party should take with him or her in the split.

If you hope to file your divorce in Texas, or if you hope to file it specifically in another state, be sure that you fully understand the residency requirements of the state where you want to file for divorce. Not all states treat this issue the same way, and in most cases, an individual must prove his or her residency in that state for about six months before he or she can legally file for divorce.

Divorce can take a turn for the worse in roughly a thousand different ways. Before you pursue relatively extreme measures like seeking another state to file your divorce, consult with an experienced divorce attorney who can help you understand the full scope of the issues at stake and determine a strong path forward toward your goals.

Source: Findlaw, "Divorce Residency FAQ's," accessed Oct. 20, 2017

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