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Residency Requirement for Divorce in Pennsylvania

Posted By Cairns Law Offices || 3-Jan-2017

In most parts of the United States, people cannot move to a new state and file for divorce shortly afterwards. Instead, most states require that people meet what is called the “residency requirement” before they can file for divorce.

Does Pennsylvania have a residency requirement? Yes, like most other states it does. In order to file for divorce in Pennsylvania, either you or your spouse must have lived in the state for at least six months prior to filing.

Additionally, the spouse who files for divorce must file the papers in the court where the other spouse lives. This is not usually an issue because in many cases, the spouses live in the same county at the time of filing for divorce, but not always.

If you wish to file for divorce and your spouse now lives in a different county than you, you have options. You can file for divorce:

  • In the county where you both lived while you were married providing you have lived in the same county continuously since you separated from your spouse,
  • In the county where you live as long as your spouse agrees to it, or
  • In the county where either of you currently live if neither of you still live in the county that you lived in when you were married to each other.

If you wish to file for divorce and your spouse moved out-of-state, you may file in the county where you live. Since travel can get expensive, the family courts in Pennsylvania have several filing options available so spouses can minimize the travel associated with obtaining a divorce.

No-Fault Divorce in Pennsylvania

At Cairns Law Offices, we help people obtain low-cost, no-fault divorces throughout Pennsylvania. If you and your spouse are willing to reach an agreement on matters pertaining to child custody (where applicable), property and debt division, we would be happy to help you achieve a quick, expedient divorce.

To learn more about our divorce services, contact us today!