What to Know About the Residency Requirements if You’re Getting Divorced in New Jersey
At Least One of The Spouses Must Reside in Howell, Freehold, Neptune, or any other Town in New Jersey to File for Divorce
There are many considerations that must be taken into account in order to move forward with filing for a divorce in New Jersey, not the least of which is whether you are legally allowed to. In order to file for divorce with the New Jersey Superior Court: Family Part, you must meet certain requirements. If you would like to file for divorce in New Jersey, contact a member of our team at Bronzino Law Firm to personally help you through your divorce, any child custody or visitation concerns you may have, and getting what you deserve in the settlement. Read on to learn how residency status may affect your divorce timeline in New Jersey.
Residency Criteria for Divorce in New Jersey
In order for a couple to legally file for divorce in a state, at least one spouse must be a legal resident. Otherwise, the governing judicial body would not have legal jurisdiction over the couple’s legal union, and they would not be able to legally oversee its dissolution. In New Jersey, the same is true. One gains legal residency for the purposes of divorce after they have lived in the state for one year. Note that only one spouse must be a New Jersey resident; the other does not even need to live in the state for the couple to be eligible to file for the divorce with the Superior Court.
How do the Grounds for Divorce Impact Residency Requirements in NJ?
Once a person has lived in New Jersey for a year, they become a resident of the state. As such, they may divorce their spouse, regardless of whether their spouse resides in the state. In a no-fault divorce (legal separation due to irreconcilable differences), there are no exceptions to this residency requirement. Until a couple or spouse has lived in New Jersey for a full year, they cannot file for a no-fault divorce.
In a fault divorce, however, there is an exception to the year-long wait time for residency. In order to expedite the process of a fault divorce, New Jersey will consider a person a legal resident if they can prove that they reside in the state. As such, cases of divorce on the basis of adultery, abandonment, domestic or drug abuse, etc., can be filed and resolved before the one-year residency mark is met.
Productively Using the Time before You Meet the Residency Deadline for Your Divorce
Officially filing for divorce is not the only way to begin the process of dissolving a legal union in New Jersey. If you are waiting to gain residency in the state in order to file for a no-fault divorce, you can use the time productively to begin negotiations with your spouse. An experienced divorce attorney can help you amicably begin working out details of assets division, child custody, and parenting time schedules. There are many positive steps you can make towards working through the details of a separation – and doing so on positive terms with your spouse – while you wait for it to be legally possible to move through the New Jersey divorce process. A skilled divorce attorney can get the process well on its way before the Superior Court is even involved.
What If I Fail to Satisfy the Residency Requirements for Divorce in New Jersey?
Aside from taking initial steps to collaborate with your spouse on terms of the divorce, there are no legal steps you can take to expedite your divorce filing in New Jersey. You must wait. Contact a divorce attorney to learn what you can do to move forward with your divorce while you wait for residency.
Retain a Divorce Lawyer to Help you Grasp the Residency Requirements for New Jersey
If you would like to file for divorce in New Jersey and have not been living in the state for a year, there is hope. Our team of experienced lawyers at Bronzino Law Firm have helped countless clients in Jackson, Belmar, Red Bank, Brick, Sea Girt, and throughout Ocean and Monmouth County navigate a divorce to a successful court decision or settlement, even though they are new to the area. While the law states that you must wait a year to file for a no-fault divorce in the state, there is much to be done in preparation for an expeditious and amicable divorce in which you are satisfied with the resolution. Contact us today at (732) 812-3102 to get understand how residency requirements impact your case and get your divorce underway.