If I live in one state and my husband lives in another, can I file for divorce here and have the child custody agreement filed in his state?

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If I live in one state and my husband lives in another, can I file for divorce here and have the child custody agreement filed in his state?

We’ve been separated for over a year now and our son lives with him. Can I file for divorce in the state in which I now live (I’ve already lived here the mandatory 6 months) and do the custody/visitation filing in my former state? We’re both in agreement on everything divorce and custody/visitation related. I understand the custody/visitation stuff needs to be done in the original state since that’s our son’s home state but I’d like to get just the divorce filed here.

Asked on February 17, 2012 under Family Law, Florida

Answers:

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You may not be able to separate the two but I don't see a problem with seeing if the court would take jurisdiction over the child custody agreement in your state if for a fact you wish to obtain full custody. If not, then you may be stuck having to file or see that everything gets transferred to his state since a) he lives there, your spouse lives there and he would be considered the respondent in this matter. If you have an attorney, you might see if the court in your state could take the whole case and apply the law of the other state. This is considered a conflict of laws matter and if your spouse feels he would get a better deal in his state for him and your child, he might petition for removal to his state or dismissal from your state. It can get complicated so you both may wish to discuss this with your respective attorneys.


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