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Family law : divorce and division of property. (Russia)

Dear Karina:

Reading on your website I can see you are able to help me with the proper paperwork for our divorce in Russia.

We did get married on 2006 in Russia. Over the years since I always hoped Olga is able to immigrate to the USA. I did start the USA immigrations process with all the collections of the papers necessary to do. So this has taken several years.

Olga has two old enough sons which needed separated immigrations process

We need to start the process from new.

But now Olga refused to send in to my immigration lawyer here in the USA original papers (divorce, marriage birth certificates etc. ) as outlined and requested by the USA Immigration.

I have spend money for lawyers cost and many hours of my time.

Have traveled to St. Petersburg myself 3 times to request some the correct forms.

In 2008 Olga did approach me with the request to buy another apartment by selling her old one and upgrade to a better locations (her old one was in a no good run down area). As the USA Immigration process did go very "slow" anyway and she said: "When she is able to move to the USA this would be a good source of income since apartments rental bring in a good income.

I did agree to this (as we are married and this is an acquisition we did while we married).

I and my mother did send her about $86,000 (I do have the bank transfers).

Well things have changed.

I always supported them as good I could.

Olga was able to make an income herself and I did helped out as much as possible.

did visit them over the years over 10 times in St. Petersburg .

But our marriage started to go not good.

I did ask (also send her several emails ) Olga what way we need to proceed.

As I have waited long enough here in the USA and started her immigration process again without her helping or supply with requested forms.

so the other "Option" is we get a divorce.

I have outlined this several times but Olga is not answering my emails or make a statement, what she wants to do.

She just says: No problem, her new passport is clean and has her Family name (Vasilieva) in it. (well it never states our married status anyway?).

So as Olga is not willing to start the divorce process herself I need to do this.

Are you be able to help?

What documents are necessary?

As I am sure the disagreement will come in about my part of payment for the new apartment.

What is my change to see some of my investments in it getting back to me?

How about a "mechanics» lien on title of the apartment if this gets ever sold or rented?

or is it advisable to walk away from it as the change to get money back is too slim.

or cost to much?

What is about the cost for our services?


I can make divorce for you and / or equitable distribution. You can solve these two issues together or separately. You have the right to divide the property within three years from the date of divorce.

Pursuant to the Russian law, any disputes as regards real estate located within Russia fall under exclusive jurisdiction of the Russian court.

You are entitled to apply to the Russian court claiming division of jointly acquired property. Simultaneously with the filing of suit you may apply for requesting the required information, and for imposing of arrest on property (prohibition of property alienation) before the trial on the merits.

Based on your motion the court may make the necessary inquiries and obtain information about the composition of other properties.

You should know that, if the spouses resided separately, even though the property was acquired during the marriage, is may be recognized as the property of the spouse who had acquired the property.

You should also know that the property acquired for account of the funds received before the marriage, may be also recognized as the property of the spouse whose funds were used for its acquisition.

The above specified circumstances need evidence. According to general rule the property acquired during the marriage is divided into 1/2 for each spouse. If you want to change the ratio you have to prove numerous facts and circumstances.

Your appearance to the court is not required. The court may oblige a plaintiff or a defendant to appear before the court in exceptional circumstances. According to general rule the presence of attorney at law authorized by you power of attorney will be sufficient.

First of all you have to execute a power of attorney certified by the Russian consulate or notarized + apostille. A copy of your passport is also required. I need original of your marriage certificate (I can to obtain new certificate from vital record office). The name and address of your wife is required. Other documents may be also required depending on the circumstances you are intending to prove. In my turn, I will prepare the petition to the court requesting to find out the real properties registered in the name of your wife and to impose arrest on the property. Copies of documents at your disposal and information about the disputed property are required.

For this purpose you should apply to the court and impose arrest on the property. The court will obtain the required information according to your motion.

The sooner you begin the case, the more are the chances to retain the property and prevent its selling by your wife or re-registration in the names of other persons. The consideration of such cases takes a long time: six months and more. Upon filing a suit you should pay a state duty which is calculated on the basis of the suit price.

As for attorney’s fee. If you need divorce only, my service fee will be cost $ХХХ flat fee. Equitable distribution is rather expensive. So could you, please, specify the amount you would like to fit within? – I will try to take you requests into account, whenever possible. The fee may based on hourly rate or flat fee.

I will be glad 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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