Being part of a military family means that changing locations is common. If you are in the military or married to someone who is, you may have lived in several different states before coming to Georgia.
You may also be stationed in one state, while retaining residency in another state. This can make things extremely confusing in the event of a divorce, as you may be unsure about where to file for divorce.
Check the divorce laws of each state
One of the benefits to a military divorce is that you may have a choice of where to file. In a traditional divorce, you are required to file in the state in which you live.
Having the option of filing in one state vs. another is a benefit because the divorce laws of one state could be more favorable to your situation.
Generally, to be able to file for divorce in a state, you must meet the state’s residency requirements. This means you must physically reside in that state for a certain time.
Georgia residency requirements
Georgia law requires that a spouse reside in the state for six consecutive months before filing for divorce. Therefore, if you or your spouse got married in another state and only recently moved to Georgia, you will have to satisfy the residency requirement before filing for divorce in Georgia.
Don’t forget practical considerations when deciding where to file. A divorce by nature requires paperwork. There are documents that must be served, reviewed and filed, ideally with the help of a divorce attorney.
If you can file for divorce in Georgia and are still living here but could also file in another state, it may be better to file in Georgia. You can save yourself the time and expense of traveling to another state to take care of everything related to your divorce.
Think long and hard before deciding where to file
Choosing where to file is an important decision. You should weigh the pros and cons of each potential place you can file and make the best decision for your situation.