Meeting the legal requirements for divorce where the parties reside is the first step in the divorce process. Basically this means the following:
- The petitioner (plaintiff) must reside in the state and county. Six months is a common state requirement; three months is typical at the county level.
- Most jurisdictions have a mandatory waiting period between filing to the finalization of a divorce. The average waiting period is six months but can be up to a year. After the waiting period, the divorce is finalized and both parties are free to remarry.
- Most jurisdictions recognize irreconcilable differences and separation. The first simply means there are marital difficulties that have led to the permanent breakdown of the marriage.
- An action for divorce must be filed with the proper court. The appropriate court is typically in the county where either the wife or husband has resided for at least 3-6 months prior to filing for divorce.
The process of divorce takes time. Spouses cannot file and finalize a divorce on the same day.