In order to obtain a divorce in Florida, the venue—the location where you file—must be appropriate and the Circuit Court must have subject matter jurisdiction over the action and possibly personal jurisdiction over the parties. Jurisdictional issues involve a technical understanding of the laws and procedures that govern family law cases for Florida residents and non-residents.
Here are some basics about jurisdiction:
- You don’t have to file for divorce in the state where you got married.
- At least one party must meet the legal residency requirements of Florida to seek a divorce here.
- Members of the military can face more complicated jurisdictional issues in family law cases.
- Most states, including Florida, require you to reside in that state for a specific amount of time before filing for divorce.
- The Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA) spells out rules and procedures for jurisdictional questions surrounding time sharing or what was previously known as custody. It applies in Florida and most other states.
Jurisdictional requirements can vary depending on the action that is filed.
Jurisdictional litigation can often be complicated, and at Nicole L. Goetz, P.L., we have extensive experience addressing jurisdictional issues. Subject matter jurisdiction refers to the Court’s ability to determine certain family law issues. Personal jurisdiction refers to the Court’s power to determine certain issues relative to the parties to the litigation. Whether you, your spouse, and/or your minor children spend time in different states or even in different countries, or whether you own assets locally or even abroad, we can assist you or your attorney in understanding the jurisdictional laws that impact Florida family law cases.
No doubt, jurisdictional issues present unique facts and circumstances from one case to the next. In order to secure appropriate legal advice on these issues, please contact us to schedule a confidential consultation at our office in Naples, Florida.