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How Long Do We Have To Be Separated To File For Divorce In Florida?


If you are thinking about filing for a divorce in Florida, you may be asking yourself a million and one questions about where to start, who to talk to, and what to do. One of the questions you may be asking yourself is “how long you have to be separated to file for divorce in Florida?”. So, how long do you have to be separated to file for divorce in Florida?

While some states require that couples separate and live in separate houses for a particular period before filing for divorce, Florida is not one of these states. Generally, in Florida, there is no set amount of time between a married couple breaking up and when they can petition the court for a divorce.

Separation in the United States of America

Some states in the U.S. require that spouses separate for a particular amount of time before filing for divorce. The specific amount of time that a couple has to be separated before filing for divorce differs from state to state, but it is usually 6 months to a year. For example, North Carolina, New York, and South Carolina require spouses to be apart for one year before filing for divorce.

However, as already mentioned, Florida is not one of the states that impose a mandatory separation period before filing for divorce. Therefore, you and your spouse don’t have to be in separate houses for a particular time before filing for divorce in Florida.

How Long Do You Need To Have Resided in Florida Before Filing for Divorce?

While Florida does not require couples to live in different houses for a certain period before filing for divorce, Florida has a “residency requirement.” A residency requirement is the amount of time that at least one spouse must reside in a state before a petition for dissolution of marriage can be filed. A spouse must have been physically present in that state for a particular period to meet a residency requirement.

The primary purpose of the residency requirement in Florida is to prevent people seeking a divorce from filing for divorce in Florida simply to take advantage of divorce laws they deem favorable. The residency requirement discourages people who are only looking for better divorce outcomes.

According to Florida law, the residency requirement is six months. This means that if you seek a divorce in Florida, you and/or your partner must have lived in Florida for no less than six months before the divorce filing. If you have lived in the state of Florida for at least half a year and your spouse has not, you can file for a dissolution of marriage. If your spouse meets the residency requirement and you don’t, they can file the petition. If they are unwilling to do so, you can establish residency, then file the petition.

In summary, Florida courts are generally more concerned about how long spouses, or at least one of the spouses, has lived in Florida before filing for divorce rather than how long the spouses have been separated before filing for divorce.

Contact a Fort Lauderdale Divorce Attorney

If you are thinking about getting a divorce in Florida, contact a Fort Lauderdale divorce attorney at Joyce A. Julian, P.A. We can help you ensure you meet all the requirements for filing a Florida divorce.


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