California requires that the party has lived in the state for 6 months and in the county where they file for, 3 months. There is no residency requirement for a legal separation.
The party who files for the dissolution is called the “Petitioner” and the document that is filed in court is the petition. The spouse that is being divorced is the “Respondent” and the document the Respondent files is the “response” if the parties are unable to agree on any or all issues, then it may be necessary for the court to make orders regarding the issues in dispute. If the Respondent does not file a response, then the case is completed by default.
Before a divorce is complete both parties have to settle these issues.
1. Division of whatever property and debts
2. If there is to be spousal support; if so how much and for how long.
3. If you have minor children, the parties have to decide a parenting plan that will include sharing the care of the children. How much support will be paid and details of the care and responsibility of the children.
In California, all property that is owned by married persons can be
one of only three things: Wife’s separate property, Husband’s separate property, and Community property.
Property acquired during the marriage as the result of the efforts of both the wife and husband belongs to the community. This type of property may include any and all property, other than gifts, devices, or inheritance. Once you have gathered the facts, records and agreed to property, children and support, the next step is to work out a marital settlement agreement.
The Marital Settlement Agreement (MSA):
The advantage of the MSA is that it becomes your judgment and both spouses will decide everything rather then a judge. The MSA can allow couples to get in depth, detail, and allow flexibility. With an MSA, you probably won’t have to go to court, without one you will likely have to appear. After the parties sign the MSA, Judgment will be filed. The court will mail a Notice of Entry of Judgment to each party. The date on the document will state the exact date the marriage is terminated.
I am not an attorney. I can only provide self help services at your specific direction.