Washington State Residency & Divorce

By Beverly Bird

Most states have durational residency requirements for divorce -- you must live in the jurisdiction for a continuous period of time before you can file there. Washington law does not include such a rule, but it does impose a waiting period before the court will actually grant you a divorce.

Residency in the State

You must be a resident of Washington in order to file for divorce there, but not for any statutory period of time. If you live in Oregon, you can't just drive over the state line and file, but you can rent an apartment with the intention of living in Washington and file for divorce the same day you arrive.

Effect on Service

If your spouse doesn't live in Oregon, this might prolong the divorce process a little. Normally, he would have 20 days to respond to your papers after you officially serve him with a copy. If he lives out of state, however, this time limit can extend to 60 days.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More

Waiting Period

Although you don't have to live in Washington for a required period of time before you can file, the state has a waiting period. The court can't grant your divorce until 90 days have passed from the date your spouse is served with your divorce petition. If you haven't resolved issues of property, debts, custody and support by this time, your divorce could take longer – you must address all these issues before the court will issue a divorce decree.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More
Do You Have to Be Separated for 6 Months to File for a Divorce?

References

Related articles

The Time Frame to Adjudicate Divorce Default in New York

A default divorce occurs when the defendant receives notice that his spouse has filed for divorce and he does nothing about it. If your spouse doesn’t officially defend against your divorce complaint, either by objecting to its grounds or to your requests for custody, support and property distribution, New York law allows you to proceed with the divorce anyway by filing for default. If you act promptly to submit all your required paperwork, you can conceivably complete the entire default divorce process within three months.

Can Someone Refuse to Get Divorced in Illinois?

Spouses often divorce because they cannot seem to get along, and sometimes that struggle carries over into the divorce process. In Illinois, one spouse can make the divorce process more difficult by disputing many steps along the way. However, though a spouse who opposes a divorce can make it take longer and cost more, he cannot actually prevent it from happening if the other spouse is determined to divorce.

Does Separation Time Count in Divorce

The length of time you and your spouse are separated can play a part in your divorce proceedings under some circumstances, but in other cases, it doesn't matter at all. It depends entirely on where you live, and if you want to – or even can – file for divorce on fault grounds.

Get Divorced Online

Related articles

Do You Have to Wait 6 Months Before You Can File for a Divorce in Illinois?

In some states, grounds for divorce are pretty straightforward – you have irreconcilable differences, and that's that. ...

How to Get a Non-Contested Divorce in Illinois

An uncontested, or non-contested, divorce is typically considered the easiest way to end your marriage. It's less ...

Can You File for Divorce Anywhere?

The divorce process is governed entirely by state law. Often, significant differences between states regarding the ...

In Arizona, What Happens After the Waiting Period in Your Divorce?

Many states, including Arizona, have built time periods into their divorce legislation, during which a case cannot move ...

Browse by category
Ready to Begin? GET STARTED