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

I have Dutch citizenship and have legally resided in the USA until Jan 1, 2003. Since Jan 1 I reside in Belgium. I married a Russian national and resident in Helsinki, Finland in July 2000, we never lived together or formed a household, she continued to reside in St Petersburg and I continued to reside in the US. In March 2001 we erected a company with limited liabilities in France, with 50% ownership each. The company bought a property as a place of business.

Due to differences unable to overcome, I filed for divorce in Missouri, USA in October 2001, the business in France non active.

She objected in Missouri court the jurisdiction of the court and also because my lawyer was not very active, my case dragged out until I ropped the case in December 2002 because of my move to Belgium and the high money deposit my lawyer wanted to continue the case in Missouri. According to the Hague convention I cannot file for divorce in Belgium until next year. My question is a follows:

Can I file for divorce in St. Petersburg? No children were born out of this marriage, I supported her financially until June 2001. Do I have to pay alimony? How are our properties going to be devided?


1. In order to answer your question about possibility to divorce in Russian court I have to know some details. That was the basis your wife lived in Finland? Does she have registration in Saint-Petersburg? What is the country of her permanent residence? In case her place of permanent residence is Saint-Petersburg, Russia, I can provide you with the divorce cervices.

2. Persons who have the right to appeal in court to demand alimony from former spouse (if the spouse has financial ability to pay):

- former wife in her pregnancy and during three years after after baby born;

- needy former spouse who does care of invalid child until 18th birthday or who maintain common child first group invalid from childhood;

- disabled needy former spouse who became disable before divorce of in first year after divorce;

- needy retired spouse not later than 5 years after divorce if spouse were in marriage for long time.

3. Property rights of spouses are determined according to law of country where is their common place of living or where they had last common place of living. Property rights of spouses if they didn't have common place of living are determined in Russia Federation in accordance with Russian law.

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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