New York State Residency Requirement
To file for divorce in New York State (NYS), you or your spouse must live in NYS as a married person for some time. Most states have residency requirements, but they can vary from state to state. In NYS, you must meet one of the following residency requirements before filing for divorce:
- The marriage ceremony took place in NYS, and either you or your spouse have been living in NYS for a continuous period of one (1) year before starting a divorce case; or
- You and your spouse were living in NYS as a married couple, and either you or your spouse lived in NYS for a continuous period of one (1) year before filing for divorce; or
- The marriage ceremony did not take place in NYS, but either you or your spouse have been living in NYS for a continuous period of two (2) years before starting a divorce case; or
- The reasons for the divorce happened in NYS, and either you or your spouse have been living in NYS for a continuous period of one (1) year before filing for divorce, or
- The reasons for the divorce happened in NYS, and when the divorce action started, both you and your spouse resided in NYS.
As noted above, to pursue a divorce in NYS, you must meet only one of the five residency requirements listed. If there is a challenge to residency in your case, some standard documents that may help you refute this challenge include your lease, proof of rent payments, utility bills, pay stubs, and your driver’s license.
Legal Editor: Dalit A. Yarden, July 2020
Changes may occur in this area of law. The information provided is brought to you as a public service with the help and assistance of volunteer legal editors, and is intended to help you better understand the law in general. It is not intended to be legal advice regarding your particular problem or to substitute for the advice of a lawyer.
Our lawyers are screened and approved – they have all gone through an application and interview process. Each lawyer we recommend has been screened for significant experience, knowledge of ethics codes and rules, and law office practices, including customer service skills and handling of fees and billing.
When you call us, you will be speaking with an attorney. One of our attorney referral counselors takes your call and talks with you about your legal question, or reviews your online referral request. There is no charge to speak with one of our attorney referral counselors -- we’re here to help.