Divorce

Old Apr 15th 2014, 7:35 pm
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Default Divorce

I am a UK citizen and my ex wife a US citizen.We original got married in the U.K and she come over on a spousal visa.

Background

We lived in the UK together for two and half years together.Her immigration history is as followed:

-Married in October 2009
-Granted a 2 year visa extension in March 2010
-Visa for 2 year extension expired end of March 2012
-Went back to the United States for personal family reasons etc.
-I stayed back in the U.K and continous working while I visited her over in the states.
-In December 2013 my marriage breakdown and wanted to file for divorce.

Questions:

1.As we are now 2 years living apart in two separate countries, I know that I can file for divorce i think by consent.How long does it take to file for a divorce process from the uk to the united states?
2.The 5 year rule is that better option without her signing for documents.
3.I did check out the divorce procedures for the UK on the citizen advice bureau, but the problem is that she living outside the UK so the courts here does not have juridication over it.Do I have to hire lawyer for something like this?
4.Last point we spoke and she said that she will not contest a divorce, because we are still legal married on paper and told me, the United States does not acknowledge our uk marriage.As I understand from things she said is that she filing separtly her tax affairs i am not sure how it all works.

Thank you for reading my question can somebody advise me on this.

Many thanks
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Old Apr 15th 2014, 7:48 pm
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Default Re: Divorce

Originally Posted by jackal1 View Post
1.As we are now 2 years living apart in two separate countries, I know that I can file for divorce i think by consent.How long does it take to file for a divorce process from the uk to the united states?
You can't think in terms of the U.K. and United States. You have to think in terms of each individual state, normally, and also understand that England and Wales is different to Scotland or Northern Ireland.

Your first step should be an experienced family law practitioner in the jurisdiction you live. And really, you're unlikely to get meaningful advice on an online forum. And your previous questions indicated you were looking to move to the United States, has something changed?
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Old Apr 15th 2014, 7:58 pm
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Default Re: Divorce

thank you for the reply i think you put me in the right direction.things did change it is difficult time now for me.thank you again
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Old Apr 15th 2014, 9:07 pm
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Default Re: Divorce

Originally Posted by jackal1 View Post
....., the United States does not acknowledge our uk marriage. ....
That is incorrect. Your marriage is recognized in the US, and unless/ until divorced she cannot remarry. You wife could start divorce proceedings in the US if she wished, or you can start in the UK. If you're going to start you will need to consult an attorney, and I am not certain how the documents will get served on your wife, but what is true for both of you is that you can start divorce proceedings in the area where you now live.
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Old Apr 15th 2014, 9:28 pm
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Default Re: Divorce

Originally Posted by jackal1 View Post
I understand from things she said is that she filing separtly her tax affairs i am not sure how it all works.
Until she is divorced, she can file her tax return as 'married filing jointly' and include your income or 'married filed separately' and only include her income. When she is divorced, she then files 'single'.

Last edited by Michael; Apr 15th 2014 at 9:39 pm.
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Old Apr 15th 2014, 9:40 pm
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Default Re: Divorce

Originally Posted by jackal1 View Post

1.As we are now 2 years living apart in two separate countries, I know that I can file for divorce i think by consent.How long does it take to file for a divorce process from the uk to the united states?

2.The 5 year rule is that better option without her signing for documents.
3.I did check out the divorce procedures for the UK on the citizen advice bureau, but the problem is that she living outside the UK so the courts here does not have juridication over it.Do I have to hire lawyer for something like this?
4.Last point we spoke and she said that she will not contest a divorce, because we are still legal married on paper and told me, the United States does not acknowledge our uk marriage.As I understand from things she said is that she filing separtly her tax affairs i am not sure how it all works.

Thank you for reading my question can somebody advise me on this.

Many thanks
There are 5 ways for you to divorce in the UK

1: If she committed adultery, you can petition for divorce with no waiting time, nor do you need mutual consent
2: If she committed "unreasonable behaviour" - you can petition for divorce with no waiting time, nor do you need mutual consent
3: after 2 years of separation, if you both agree, you can divorce
4: after 5 years of separation, even if she doesn't agree, you can divorce her
5: if she left you, after 2 years, you can petition for divorce on abandonment, you do not need her consent.

I did my own divorce in the UK, I did need my ex to sign some papers, but you can do that by mail.

It was pretty easy, here are the rules. As you live in the UK you have to start the divorce in the UK

https://www.gov.uk/divorce/overview

OH, and yes you have an international marriage which is recognised by both UK and US.. your wife is mistaken that the US don't recognize it, and if she has remarried, she is a bigamist.
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Old Apr 15th 2014, 9:48 pm
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Default Re: Divorce

Originally Posted by Michael View Post
Until she is divorced, she can file her tax return as 'married filing jointly' and include your income or 'married filed separately' and only include her income. When she is divorced, she then files 'single'.
She cannot file married/joint unless her spouse is willing to sign the tax return (and elect to be treated as U.S. resident, if not already so). So her choices are married/separate or another eligible status. It may be possible to file as single if there is a legal separation in place:
http://www.irs.gov/uac/Newsroom/Choo...-Filing-Status
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Old Apr 15th 2014, 9:54 pm
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Default Re: Divorce

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post
That is incorrect. Your marriage is recognized in the US, and unless/ until divorced she cannot remarry. You wife could start divorce proceedings in the US if she wished, or you can start in the UK. If you're going to start you will need to consult an attorney, and I am not certain how the documents will get served on your wife, but what is true for both of you is that you can start divorce proceedings in the area where you now live.
This is correct.

UK documents don't need to be "served" as such, just delivered... so the mail is perfectly adequate. It does help if the spouse signs and returns the documents, if that's a problem, there are plenty of process servers in the US to contact.
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Old Apr 15th 2014, 10:08 pm
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Default Re: Divorce

Originally Posted by Trixie_b View Post
There are 5 ways for you to divorce in the UK

1: If she committed adultery, you can petition for divorce with no waiting time, nor do you need mutual consent
2: If she committed "unreasonable behaviour" - you can petition for divorce with no waiting time, nor do you need mutual consent
3: after 2 years of separation, if you both agree, you can divorce
4: after 5 years of separation, even if she doesn't agree, you can divorce her
5: if she left you, after 2 years, you can petition for divorce on abandonment, you do not need her consent.

I did my own divorce in the UK, I did need my ex to sign some papers, but you can do that by mail.

It was pretty easy, here are the rules. As you live in the UK you have to start the divorce in the UK

https://www.gov.uk/divorce/overview

OH, and yes you have an international marriage which is recognised by both UK and US.. your wife is mistaken that the US don't recognize it, and if she has remarried, she is a bigamist.
Hi

In a no fault system, can you please tell me what qualifies as ' unreasonable
behavior" and clarify how one commits it please ?

P.s my questions are not based on preceding questions/replies

Thanks
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Old Apr 15th 2014, 10:23 pm
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Default Re: Divorce

That option is NOT no fault under the regulations of a UK divorce.

From experiences of people I know, unreasonable behavior depends - physical and/or emotional abuse certainly qualify.

being an addict (alcohol or drug) also constitutes unreasonable behavior.

Petitioners in the UK have to write essays on examples as part of the divorce petition.
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Old Apr 16th 2014, 12:18 am
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Default Re: Divorce

Originally Posted by jackal1 View Post
I am a UK citizen and my ex wife a US citizen.We original got married in the U.K and she come over on a spousal visa.

Background

We lived in the UK together for two and half years together.Her immigration history is as followed:

-Married in October 2009
-Granted a 2 year visa extension in March 2010
-Visa for 2 year extension expired end of March 2012
-Went back to the United States for personal family reasons etc.
-I stayed back in the U.K and continous working while I visited her over in the states.
-In December 2013 my marriage breakdown and wanted to file for divorce.

Questions:

1.As we are now 2 years living apart in two separate countries, I know that I can file for divorce i think by consent.How long does it take to file for a divorce process from the uk to the united states?
2.The 5 year rule is that better option without her signing for documents.
3.I did check out the divorce procedures for the UK on the citizen advice bureau, but the problem is that she living outside the UK so the courts here does not have juridication over it.Do I have to hire lawyer for something like this?
4.Last point we spoke and she said that she will not contest a divorce, because we are still legal married on paper and told me, the United States does not acknowledge our uk marriage.As I understand from things she said is that she filing separtly her tax affairs i am not sure how it all works.

Thank you for reading my question can somebody advise me on this.

Many thanks
I am a retired family lawyer. The other advice you've had all looks correct to me. Providing your wife is co-operating, it is quite possible to do it yourself.

For that reason I'd go for two years separation with consent. The unreasonable behaviour option is likely to rile her.

Your biggest problem will be if she decides not to co-operate and does not acknowledge service of the petition. A divorce respondent who avoids service of a petition can be a pain in the arse in the UK, never mind if they are abroad. You can hire process servers, but that is additional expense and they are not always successful.

Waiting for five years won't get round the need to prove service of the documents. In other words, although you won't need her to consent to the divorce at that stage, you will still need to show that she has received the petition.

So, softly softly catchee monkey. Be nice, do it all by agreement, don't give her a reason for not co-operating.
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Old Apr 16th 2014, 12:31 am
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Default Re: Divorce

Reading Trixie's posts, I realise I should maybe explain the point about service.

No matter what the grounds for divorce are, the court wants to know that your spouse is aware of the proceedings. The first step is always to post the documents to the spouse, and if they acknowledge receipt, i.e. sign the forms and send them back, then there is no problem.

If they refuse to communicate with the court, then you've got to find another way to prove that they have received the divorce petition, and that is where process servers come in.
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Old Apr 16th 2014, 12:31 am
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Default Re: Divorce

Originally Posted by Editha View Post
I am a retired family lawyer. The other advice you've had all looks correct to me. Providing your wife is co-operating, it is quite possible to do it yourself.

For that reason I'd go for two years separation with consent. The unreasonable behaviour option is likely to rile her.

Your biggest problem will be if she decides not to co-operate and does not acknowledge service of the petition. A divorce respondent who avoids service of a petition can be a pain in the arse in the UK, never mind if they are abroad. You can hire process servers, but that is additional expense and they are not always successful.

Waiting for five years won't get round the need to prove service of the documents. In other words, although you won't need her to consent to the divorce at that stage, you will still need to show that she has received the petition.

So, softly softly catchee monkey. Be nice, do it all by agreement, don't give her a reason for not co-operating.
From the link I posted earlier - it seems that things have changed and if they don't respond within 21 days, the divorce can proceed as if they did respond in agreement.

It surprised me, but it's written there pretty explicitly.
It certainly wasn't the case when i petitioned for divorce, and I didn't think the UK legal system ever accepted a none response as positive, but it's written in the government instructions!
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Old Apr 16th 2014, 1:32 am
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Default Re: Divorce

Originally Posted by Trixie_b View Post
From the link I posted earlier - it seems that things have changed and if they don't respond within 21 days, the divorce can proceed as if they did respond in agreement.

It surprised me, but it's written there pretty explicitly.
It certainly wasn't the case when i petitioned for divorce, and I didn't think the UK legal system ever accepted a none response as positive, but it's written in the government instructions!
Hmm. I think the page you've linked to is a little misleading.

See this link:
http://www.cotswoldfamilylaw.co.uk/w...edure-serving/

It says more or less what I said.
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Old Apr 16th 2014, 1:51 am
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Default Re: Divorce

Originally Posted by Editha View Post
Hmm. I think the page you've linked to is a little misleading.

See this link:
http://www.cotswoldfamilylaw.co.uk/w...edure-serving/

It says more or less what I said.
I hear you, and am not disagreeing, however the Government web site I linked to was updated less than 3 months ago. Your article has no date.

If indeed this is a new regulation, perhaps registered mail with a signature would suffice to prove notification.

The government web site SPECIFICALLY says no answer constitutes agreement and it's marked with a ! (I highlighted it in the attachment).


Hopefully the original poster will be able to contact his soon to be ex and she will comply and he will not need to research further.
Attached Thumbnails Divorce-divorce.jpg  

Last edited by Trixie_b; Apr 16th 2014 at 2:00 am.
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