Divorce Requirements in California

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Summary Dissolution Legal Separation Regular Dissolution Annulment
Residency (CCP Section 395) One of the parties must have lived in California for at least 6 months. Case can be filed in any county in which the Petitioner or Respondent resides. No residency time requirement. One of the parties must have lived in California for at least 6 months. One of the parties must have lived in California for at least 6 months.
Court One of the parties must have lived in the County when you file for at least 3 months just prior to filing Same Same Same
Knowledge and Service Both spouses have read and understood the Summary Dissolution Booklet. Since the parties file “jointly”, there is no service requirement. The filing party must serve the other party with the Summons and Petition to establish jurisdiction. The filing party must serve the other party with the Summons and Petition to establish jurisdiction. The filing party must serve the other party with the Summons and Petition to establish jurisdiction.
Filing Party Both parties must be willing to sign the Petition (this proceeding is filed jointly). Either spouse can file without the approval or permission of the other party. Either spouse can file without the approval or permission of the other party. Either spouse can file without the approval or permission of the other party.
Children You have no minor children No restrictions No restrictions No restrictions
Pregnancy Wife is currently not pregnant No restrictions No restrictions No restrictions
Real Property Neither spouse has any interest in real estate anywhere in the world. No restrictions No restrictions No restrictions
Community Debt You and your spouse owe less than $6,000 in community debts (excluding car loans). No restrictions No restrictions No restrictions
Community Assets You and your spouse own less than $40,000 in community assets (not including car values). No restrictions No restrictions No restrictions
Separate Property Neither spouse owns over $40,000 in separate property (not including cars). No restrictions No restrictions No restrictions
Judgement A Request for Entry of Final Judgment can be submitted by either party after 6 months from the date of filing. Either party can unilaterally request Dismissal of the case prior to entry of a Final Judgment. In an uncontested matter, an entry of Judgment can be submitted 31 days after service on the other party. Judgment can be entered immediately. After Judgment, the parties are still able to retain certain “marriage” benefits which would otherwise be lost in a full divorce. There is NO TERMINATION OF MARRIAGE DATE. In an uncontested matter, an entry of Judgment can be submitted 31 days after service on the other party. Judgment can be entered immediately. However, neither party can remarry until after the termination of marriage date (min. 6 months and 1 day after date of service). In an uncontested matter, an entry of Judgment can be submitted 31 days after service on the other party. A hearing is held and Judgment can be entered immediately, at which time, if granted, the parties are immediately restored to “single” status.

 

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