Hello, I'm a US citizen living in Italy. I recently got a partial divorce from my italian ex husband (i can remarry but the financial part is still being discussed in court). I need to register my divorce in the States because we have a condo in California. It's under both of our names and so is the mortgage. I want to pay off the mortgage and share the remaining amount between my ex husband and myself. but he wants to keep the whole property for himself. So I understand I need to register my divorce in the States and request an order of sales. What is the easiest way to do this? Do I need to live in CA for six months before being able to register my divorce? If I register my divorce in a different state, will it still be valid in California? How much would a lawyer charge to take care of my case?
1 Answer from Attorneys
You have what we call in the US a "status only" divorce. Registering it in the US would only give you the same rights as in Italy: to remarry. It doesn't give you the right to do anything with real estate or any other joint assets, no matter where the assets are located.
The only way a US court would order the property sold and proceeds distributed, would be if you a) get an order from the Italian court saying that, or b) get a final divorce judgment in Italy that says the property is to be sold and net proceeds split, and then register the order or judgment with the California courts in the county where the property is located. You would not have to live in CA or anywhere in the US to do that, since the property is here.