Thursday, March 11, 2010

Where you get Divorced matters! - British woman loses rights to £1.2 Million Pension

Every state (and every country) has standards for jurisdiction that decide whether or not you can bring a divorce case to their courts.

Where you can file for divorce is an important question because the laws of the state or county where you will file will control how your divorce case is resolved, and those laws can differ significantly. A British woman was recently denied access to file divorce in the United Kingdom courts because her and her Husband last lived together in France. According to The Daily Telegraph, this decision will result in her losing any rights she might have had to her Husband's £1.2m pension.

The laws can also differ greatly by state. In Massachusetts, for instance, the court can consider potential inheritance as an opportunity "for future acquisition of capital assets and income" and award alimony or assign property to one spouse or the other based on that consideration. In many other states inheritance or potential inheritance cannot be considered by the divorce court.

In order to know where you can file for Divorce consult with a local attorney in the jurisdiction in which you live.

In Massachusetts M.G.L. ch 208 §4 requires that to file a divorce case in the Commonwealth the parties must have lived together in the Commonwealth as a married couple, and at least one of them lived in the Commonwealth at the time the cause of the divorce happened. As an exception to this requirement, M.G.L. ch 208 §5 allows you to file for divorce in the Commonwealth if you have been a resident for one year, or if the cause of the divorce occurred in Massachusetts and you are currently a resident. Since the standard for a no-fault divorce is a subjective standard relating only to whether or not you believe your marriage is irretrievably broken down, the Supreme Judicial Court on an interlocutory appeal has ruled that if you lived in Massachusetts when you came to the realization that your marriage is over, that is sufficient for establishing jurisdiction to file for divorce in Massachusetts. Caffyn v. Caffyn SJC-09141 (2004).

If you have questions about divorce in Massachusetts schedule a 1-hour Free Consultation.

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