How does residency in a divorce work with respect to children?

UPDATED: Jul 25, 2011

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How does residency in a divorce work with respect to children?

My husband and I want a divorce. I want to file here in AZ (represent ourselves). We have been separated for 1 year and we have 2 children together. One has been living with me. After the other separation the other left to CA to be with him; he has since come back as of last month. Can I still file for divorce or do I have to wait the 6 months that it states in the divorce paperwork. We are both agreeing to have joint custody and want this to happen ASAP.

Asked on July 25, 2011 Arizona


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your situation but it sounds as if things are at this point in time amicable. I am a little confused about your question.  In order to file for divorce YOU have to be a resident of the state for 6 months.  As for custody the general rule is that you have to file for custody where the child resides.  The children are with you from what I gather.  But I think that you are both in agreement as to custody,  What needs to be worked out is the visitation as your husband resides in California.  Watch service upon him with the paperwork as well unless he will accept service and then you will need an affidavit to file with the courts.  Child support is generally governed by statute and there are worksheets that need to be filled out by both of you.  Good luck.

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