Divorce and The Residency Requirement

By Lindsay B. Haber 

Screen Shot 2018-12-12 at 5.34.45 PMWhen you file for a divorce in Florida, either you or your spouse must have been a resident of this fine state for the last six (6) months. But why is this?

Well, Florida, just like many other states, has a compelling interest to avoid interference by another state that may have ties to either you or your spouse (and kids) or your assets and liabilities.

Take, for example, a Wife who wants to file for divorce. She and her husband live together in Virginia where they own a marital residence and her husband operates his own dental practice. This Wife tells her husband she wants a divorce on Monday, flies to her parents in Florida on Tuesday, and files for divorce in Florida on Wednesday. I think we can all agree that with this example Florida is not the state for this divorce. Unless and until this Wife truly creates her own residency in Florida, the Virginia Courts would be deemed the state to help this family through their dissolution of marriage.

So what would it take for this Wife in the example above to meet Florida’s six (6) month residency requirement? While Florida Courts will look to both law and fact to make this determination, here are a few examples of when Florida Courts have found the residency requirement met when living in Florida for six months:

  • Obtained a Florida License;
  • Obtained a Florida Voter registration card;
  • Registered a Florida Automobile tag;
  • Obtained employment in Florida;
  • Had utility bills in that person’s name;
  • Had minor children living with you and attending school in Florida; and/or
  • Claimed Homestead exemption.
Now, this list is just a sample and is not definitive of whether or not a Court will find that this Wife in the example above, or you for that matter, have met the residency requirement after six months in Florida. For more information regarding the Florida Residency Requirement or to address your family law matters, please contact Kluger Kaplan.


Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes Warp Speed Divorce: Lessons Learned from Mel Gibson

Photo via Getty Images

Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes Warp Speed Divorce: Lessons Learned from Mel Gibson

By: Jason Marks

Just ten days after Katie Holmes filed for divorce from mega-celebrity Tom Cruise, the parties have reached a settlement agreement.

While the parties have issued a joint statement proclaiming that they acted in the best interests of their 6 year-old daughter, Suri, more likely, the quick settlement was to preserve Cruise’s public image. Who can forget the fiasco that was Mel Gibson’s split from his girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva?

According to a recent profile by Forbes, Cruise made $75 million in the last year. Both Cruise and Holmes have strong incentives to ensure that Cruise remains a media darling in order to maximize his access to starring movie roles and maintain his profitability. Airing their dirty laundry in public could only serve to hurt Cruise’s career. When was the last time you went to a Mel Gibson movie? A swift and confidential settlement agreement will stave off any significant amount of press. There are only so many times the media can repeat the same joint statement before they will move on, allowing Cruise and Holmes to pursue their careers without a spotlight shining on their personal lives. Early settlement had less to do with Suri and more to do with preserving Cruises’ legacy at the box office.

Alimony Bill Would Let Rich Dudes Who Cheat on Their Wives Off Easier

Interesting article from the Miami New Times today, regarding a new legislation to change Florida’s Alimony laws.  Read the full story here.

Ritch Workman, the Republican state representative from Melbourne who has already introduced a bill to legalize dwarf tossing, is back with another stunningly stupid and controversial bill. Just eight days after Workman finalized his own divorce, he introduced a new piece of legislation that would radically rewrite the state’s alimony laws and would effectively let wealthy men who cheat on their wives off the financial hook.

Read the full story here.