If my wife and I are stationed in Germany and have been here for 1 year but I want to divorce her, where do I begin?

Do I file for a German divorce, or can I do it in my home state? And how do I begin the process to divorce her? We have one child; can my wife flee the country with her? What about the Hague Act that prevents this, if she flees, will the child be returned to me? What can I do to prevent her from taking the child back to the US? She is an adulteress and a mental abuser; I just want this over with as soon as possible.

Asked on July 30, 2015 under Family Law, Texas


B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

You can file for a divorce in your home state, but try to arrange for an oversees consult with an attorney before you do.  You may be able to file in Germany, as well.  So you would want to consult with an attorney in Germany as well.  The reason for consulting with attorneys in both countries is to make sure you compare options. 
Generally, in Texas, your options would be to seek temporary orders which granted you managing conservatorship of the children and put limits on her travel plans.  The orders will help you prevent her from taking the children out of the country.  If she violates, then you have an order in place to enforce.
I know you want this over with as soon as possible, but keep in mind that this is a divorce action.  Texas requires a 60 day waiting period before a divorce can be finalized.  However, the more complicated the divorce, the longer it will take.  You already have one complexity because of your distance from the court.  If you add child custody issues, it could prolong the divorce action even further.

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