I am active duty and stationed overseas. Can I get divorced in Florida?
Updated: Oct 28, 2019
Florida requires a person to live in Florida for six months before filing for divorce. Florida courts have recognized an exception to the six month residency rule when a military member is involved. A military member must have a “concurrent intent to be a permanent resident” of Florida. This means a military member does not have to live in Florida but must intend to return to Florida to live after military service.
A military member who was a Florida resident before entering the military and never establishes a permanent residence somewhere else is considered a Florida resident.
In contrast, a military member who was a Florida resident at some point in his or her career will be tested by conduct. A court will ask questions such as:
Does the military member own a home in Florida or outside of Florida?
Is the military member registered to vote in Florida?
Does the military member tell the military he or she is a Florida resident?
Are any owned vehicles registered in Florida?
Depending on the answers to those questions a Florida court will determine if the military member is a Florida resident.
What if my spouse have never lived in Florida? Even if your spouse has never lived in Florida he or she may still be subject to Florida courts for purposes of divorce.
What if my kids have never lived in Florida? What state can make a decision about child custody and time share is governed by the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Enforcement Act (UCCJEA). Even if your kids have never lived in Florida a Florida court may be able to decide custody and time share. Florida courts will look to the kids’ ties or connections to Florida or potentially elsewhere.
Jurisdictional questions create complex and any questions should be directed to an attorney with knowledge of family law in that state.
DISCLAIMER: This information is provided for educational purposes only. Laws, regulations, and rules constantly change and information is valid for the date published only. No legal advice is given. No attorney client relationship has been formed by reading this entry. Each case is different and you should consult with a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction before undergoing any legal proceeding.