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Family Law: divorce proceedings, conclusion of marriage (Russia)

My daughter got married in Texas and then left for Russia. Her husband wants a divorce, and proposes Annulment, on the ground of "fraud". What consequences will it entail for the future life of my daughter (for example, career). Can he do it without her, and is it really possible to “pin on” such a ground (in fact, there was love and consent)? Why is he afraid of "Divorce" and how to allay his fears? (She is not going to lay claims to anything. Is she required to go to America in order to get a divorce? If she remains married in America, will it be of importance for her in Russia and in general?


If the marriage is broken you daughter should certainly formalize the divorce. The divorce, which is formalized in Russia, will be recognized in the USA, and visa versa. Therefore I don’t recommend leaving the marital status on tenterhooks.

The international law has the notion of “order of propriety”. It implies that the case which was commenced earlier is subject to consideration. Therefore it is very important who of the spouses was the first to apply to the court. If your son-in-law is the first to apply, your daughter could only defend herself against his arguments, and her situation will be more difficult, than in the case of her being the first to apply to the court.

Being a national of the Russian Federation, and residing in Russia she can formalize her divorce with the American husband at the Russian Federation court at the place of her residence (Article 160 part 2 of the RF Family Code, article 402, part 3 cl. 8 of the RF Civil Procedure Code). For applying to the court she should prepare with an attorney her statement of claim, to attach a receipt confirming the payment of state duty, the original certificate of marriage (if the marriage was registered in the USA, the certificate must be translated into Russian and apostilled), copy of her passport confirming the RF citizenship and place of residence in the Russian Federation.

If your son-in-law applies to court after the case of your daughter is filed with the court, his case must be left without consideration due to availability of similar suit filed with another court earlier.

If your son-in-law manages to be the first to apply to the court, your daughter will have to engage an American attorney. And if fraud is specified as the ground in the suit, and annulment is claimed, I think your daughter will have to go to the USA in order to defend her rights, since the judgment made on this ground will no doubt cause additional problems for your daughter.

Therefore in order to avoid future problems, and in order to avoid unnecessary trips to a foreign court, I recommend your daughter to be the first to apply to the court, which will enable her to formalize the divorce quickly and painlessly pursuant to the RF law.

We will be pleased to help you.

Articles and consultations authored by attorney reflect the state of law as of the date of their writing. The laws change daily. Users of this site are advised to consult attorney regarding their situation.
Karina Duvall
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