Dominican Republic Divorce Laws

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A divorce in the United States often involves many complicated procedures and lengthy waiting periods. In addition, there are different state laws that propose different residency requirements ranging from a period of three months to two years. Many spouses find it difficult to wait for such a long time to get separated. So they look for a quick and cheaper option to get divorced. Dominican Republican divorce laws provide the same kind of options for dissolution of marriage.

In the Dominican Republic, a special divorce law was passed in 1971 for nonresident foreigners. As per this law, the singular ground for divorce for this group of people is "mutual consent". It is implied that if a married couple does not stay in this country, but wish to procure a valid divorce as per the laws of this country, then both of them must agree with each other regarding the decision to divorce.

Requirements as per Dominican Republic Divorce Laws

  • There is no necessity for the person who is seeking divorce to stay in the Dominican Republic for a specified period of time. Thus, there are no residency requirements for the spouses who wish to apply for a divorce.
  • One of the divorcing partners must make an appearance in the court of this country. It is permissible for such a divorcing partner to arrive one day before the appearance and leave one day after the appearance. Such a partner should fulfill all other legal requirements.
  • A separation agreement must be developed by the divorcing partners and this must include the following topics.
    • Support payments that is child support - The agreement should mention the amount of child support and the form in which this support will be paid by the partners.
    • Alimony - The economically settled spouse should agree to provide monthly payment to other spouse as alimony.
    • Division of the common property - Property distribution should be clarified in such agreement with proper division of assets and liabilities.
    • Custody of the child or children, if any - The children must be secured by mentioning the details of a parent who will be legally responsible for their development and education.
  • The above mentioned separation agreement must be drafted by a lawyer. Such a lawyer must have his or her practice in the jurisdiction of the place where the marriage took place. It is advised that the spouse should clear all disputes before reaching any final agreement.
  • The divorcing partner, who does not make an appearance in the court of this country, should execute a power of attorney in front of a Dominican Consul or a Notary Public. The role of this power of attorney is to offer proof in the court of this country that the absent divorcing partner accepts the jurisdiction of that court.
  • Along with the separation agreement and the power of attorney, the divorcing partner, who makes an appearance in the court of this country, must produce the following documents.
    • A certified copy of the marriage certificate.
    • Birth certificates of all the minor children born from the marriage.
    • The identification details including all legal proofs of residence and citizenship.
    • The property details including the specifications of marital assets and liabilities and ownership of property.

Illegal divorces as per Dominican Republic Divorce Laws

The Embassy of this country is aware of the fact that some websites spread wrong information about the divorce laws in the country. These websites state that divorces are granted without the need of any mutual consent. Moreover, they mention that there is no need of any appearance in the court. But, such divorces are considered illegal by the Dominican Republic divorce laws. They are neither recognized by the Dominican courts nor by the US courts. Therefore, it is necessary to approach legal help before applying for a divorce in this country. In fact, the help is to be sought from the American or local experts rather than Dominican lawyers.

Certain other aspects

  • The Special Divorce Law in the Dominican Republic enables foreigners to have a divorce in just one day.
  • This law is meant for 3 types of people:
    • Foreigners
    • Residents of Dominican Republic who are married to foreigners
    • Dominicans who are presently not a resident of this country

So, this is brief account on the Dominican Republic divorce laws. It is to be noted that no court in this country approves divorce unless a mutual consent is proved by the partners.

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