How do I proceed with a divorce between a US citizen and a non-US citizen?

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How do I proceed with a divorce between a US citizen and a non-US citizen?

I’m the US citizen and my wife is Italian. We have a daughter and have been married 5 years (married in New Mexico). I’m currently stationed overseas in Italy and want to start a divorce. I would file irreconcilable differences. I want custody of the child, she is US/Italian citizen. My wife is currently unemployed and has not worked in 5 years.

Asked on September 13, 2010 under Family Law, Alaska

Answers:

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

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

I am sorry for your troubles.  I am assuming that your wife is a resident alien with a green card.  You file for divorce in the County in the State in which you reside. The grounds for divorce will also be governed by that state's laws. You wrote this question under the state of Alaska. You would have to meet the residency requirements of that state to file.  Otherwise the Court will not have jurisdiction over you or the matter.  Now, you are in the military.  There are special rules regarding those in active military duty and they can vary from state to state so I would check with an attorney.  As for your daughter, issues of custody are determined in the best interest of the child.  Your wife being unemployed will not necessarily be a factor as child support will also come in to play. 


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