Foreign marriage and divorce in Michigan: The United States is a nation of immigrants, and Michigan is no different. People live in Michigan for work, school, family and a variety of other reasons. However, when a marriage is struggling, I am often asked where can I get divorced? Can I get a Michigan Divorce?
If you were married in the United States, you can obtain a Michigan divorce provided you have resided in the State for at least 180 days and a County within Michigan for 10 days immediately preceding the filing of divorce. It does not matter what State you were married in.
The same rule applies if you were married in another country. As a general rule, a foreign marriage that is legally performed and valid abroad is also legally valid in the United States unless the marriage would break state law (Michigan Divorce law). For instance, while some countries may allow a foreign marriage with multiple wives or same sex marriages, in order for the marriage to be valid in Michigan the foreign marriage cannot violate Michigan law.
If you were divorced in another country, the divorce will be recognized in Michigan under a fundamental principal called comity provided:
1. The basic rudiments of due process were followed;
2. The parties were present in court; and
3. A hearing on the merits was held.
See: Dart v. Dart, 224 Mich. App. 146 (1997)
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By: Daniel Findling
The Divorce Guy, Michigan Divorce Attorneys and Specialists