Requirements to Terminate Domestic Partnership Through Divorce or Legal Separation
If your domestic partnership was registered in California, there is no residency requirement to file a dissolution of domestic partnership in California.
However, if your domestic partnership was registered in a state other than California, one partner must have been and be a resident of California for at least six months and of the county of filing for at least three months immediately prior to filing the petition.
Procedures to Terminate Domestic Partnership in California
In California, there are two ways to terminate a registered domestic partnership. In certain circumstances, if all of the requirements are met, partners may terminate a registered domestic partnership by preparing and filing a Notice to Terminate Domestic Partnership with the California Secretary of State. In all other circumstances, at least one of the partners must file a petition with and obtain a judgment from, the Superior Court in the same way that California marriages are terminated.
You can terminate your domestic partnership this way only if ALL of the requirements listed below are true at the time you file the form. Even if only one of the statements is not true, you cannot terminate the domestic partnership with the California Secretary of State and you must file a petition with the Superior Court in order to terminate the domestic partnership
- You have both read and understand the Secretary of State brochure regarding terminating domestic partnership.
- You both want to terminate the domestic partnership.
- You have not been registered as domestic partners longer than five years.
- No children were born to you before or during your domestic partnership.
- You did not adopt any children during the domestic partnership.
- Neither of you is now pregnant.
- Neither of you own any part of land or buildings.
- Neither of you is renting any land or buildings (except where one or both of you live, and that lease does not include a purchase option that will end within one year of filing the Notice of Termination of Domestic Partnership form).
- Not counting automobiles, your community property is not worth more than $40,000.
- Not counting automobiles, neither of you own separate property worth more than $40,000 (exclusive of automobile values).
- Not counting automobile loans, your community obligations are less than $6,000.
- You are both willing to sign an agreement which states how you want your possessions and debts to be divided or that you have no community property or community debts.
- You both agree that neither wants money or support from the other partner except what is included in the property settlement agreement dividing the community property and obligations.
If these statements are all true, you may terminate the domestic partnership by filing a Notice of Termination of Domestic Partnership with the California.
- Petition for dissolution of domestic partnership (divorce)
- Petition for annulment of domestic partnership (annulment) or
- Petition for judgment of legal separation of domestic partnership (legal separation)
All three of these proceedings essentially follow the same process as terminating a marriage in California. Refer to the appropriate section of our web site for further information.