What can I do ifI filed for divorce inone state but my husband has filed in another?

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What can I do ifI filed for divorce inone state but my husband has filed in another?

My husband filed for divorce in TX; I filed in LA (our marital state). He has met the residence requirement in TX but I don’t want to sign the papers in TX. I want him to sign in LA. Can I force him to do this?

Asked on February 25, 2011 under Family Law, Louisiana

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

There is no easy or simple answer, since this involves complicated issues of jurisdication and of timing of the filing of the two divorces. Significant factors will be the exact timing--who filed first--with the first  filing generally getting precedence; another issue will be the contacts of both parties with each state and therefore each state's interest in having jurisdiction over this matter. This is not something for a layperson to try to deal with; you should retain a matrimonial or divorce attorney to help you. If you cannot afford one, try contacting your state's legal services or legal aid; you might also try contacting support or advocacy groups for divorced women, who may have some resources to help you.

Before doing that, however, ask yourself if it's worth not filing his papers: that is, if substantively you are gettinig what you wanted or was agreed to, does it matter which papers you file? There certainly is convenience in having it done locally, but you do need to weigh dragging this matter out against that.


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