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

Question

We want Karina Duvall to confirm the advice as she has done about the spousal support.

Answer

1. You have applied to the Russian court with child support and custody issues, because you and your child were in Russia at that time. This act does not commit you to anything in the future, and does not impose any obligations in the future for you or your husband. You can address at any time to any court where you or your husband live. By Russian law, child support and custody issues can be resolved separate from divorce. In accordance with Russian legislation, you can do this regardless from divorce, and this is in no way favors the choice of a particular jurisdiction, you can choose any competent court.

2. Persons who have the right to appeal in court to demand spousal support from other spouse (if the spouse has financial ability to pay):
- wife in her pregnancy and during three years after baby was born;
- needy spouse who does care for disabled child until 18th birthday;
- disabled needy spouse who became disable before divorce of in first year after divorce;
- needy retired spouse not later than 5 years after divorce if spouse was in marriage for long time.

Property rights of spouses are determined according to law of country where their common place of living is, or where they had last common place of living.

Thus, you can get spousal support in Russia just before your daughter becomes 3 years old, and only if the husband has income in Russia. If he receives income in the USA, your chances of getting any financial assistance in Russia are close to zero.

3. The settlement agreement is supposed to be incorporated in to divorce judgment. In this case your agreement shall be binding on the parties. Therefore, if your husband is willing to give you flat in New York and any spousal support, he can do this by agreement. I advise that you refrain from personal communication with your husband, and to negotiate through attorneys. If you cannot afford USA attorney, you can ask judge to make your husband pay for your attorney. If you do not want to do this, or if preferable to contact with your husband in person, do this in writing. Please ask him to send you his offer with all conditions in writing, and discuss with an attorney if this is good for you or not.
Karina Duvall
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