Many people believe they must file for divorce in the state where they were married. While this is not true, there are location and time requirements that apply to every couple filing for divorce. If these requirements are not met, the divorce case may be dismissed.
RI Residency Requirements for Divorcing Spouses
Under Rhode Island law, no complaint for divorce will be granted unless the petitioner has lived in Rhode Island for a period of one year before filing. After residency is established, the divorce must be filed in the county in which the filing petitioner resides.
If you have not lived in Rhode Island for at least one year, you have a few options:
Have your spouse file.
If you are on good terms with your spouse and your spouse has been living in Rhode Island longer than you have, he may meet the necessary residency requirements and can file the paperwork instead.
File in another state.
Each state creates its own period of residency for divorce proceedings. If you and your spouse have recently moved from a different state, you may qualify for divorce under that state’s laws.
If neither you nor your spouse have lived in Rhode Island for at least one year and do not qualify for divorce in another state, you will have to wait until residency has been established before a complaint can be filed. However, you may begin the process of filling out your documents and paperwork while you are waiting through a period of residency.
Do You Need To Speak To A Rhode Island Divorce Attorney?
If you are considering a divorce you need to speak with an experienced Rhode Island divorce attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help divorce clients in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.