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Foreign Divorce

While living or traveling abroad, some couples or individuals make the tough decision to file for divorce. However, divorce is not handled by national courts, but rather by courts in individual states. For this reason, U.S. nationals may have many questions while attempting to file for overseas divorce, and indeed, getting a divorce abroad can be a complicated affair.

The U.S. does not hold treaties with any other country guaranteeing that the country’s laws and decisions will be enforced or protected within the United States. Therefore, many people are concerned that the divorce they obtain while abroad will not be recognized in the U.S. This is a legitimate concern, and those obtaining divorces in a foreign country should be cautious to ensure that their divorce will still be valid upon a return to the U.S.

Divorce Abroad

The basic types of foreign divorces include:

  • Bilateral divorce. Both parties are present in the foreign nation, or one party is present and one is represented by his or her attorney.
  • Practical recognition divorce. A divorce is granted despite claims of the party contesting the divorce because of particular fairness principles.
  • Ex parte divorce. The party present in the foreign country files for divorce by sending notice to an absent spouse.

A foreign divorce may be considered void if inadequate notice is given to the absent party during an ex parte divorce. These divorces are neither recognized not enforced by U.S. courts.

Contact Us

If you are considering a divorce, are involved in a foreign divorce, or have questions about a marriage or divorce you obtained internationally, the Raleigh divorce lawyers of Marshall & Taylor PLLC can help. Contact us today at (919) 833-1040 for more information.