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Validity of California divorce

San Francisco, CA |

Is divorce settled in California valid outside the US? It was based on irreconcilable differences and both parties were well represented during the process. After the divorce is settled here, can one party go and challenge it outside the US? Would that be contempt of court here in California?

To be more specific, I am wondering of its validity in India.

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Attorney answers 4


Your California divorce will be recognized in all states of the United States and most foreign countries. The tenor of your question implies that your former spouse may be contemplating or taking some form of legal action to establish that you are married in some other country. If this is presenting a potential or actual serious problem for you, I suggest that you consult with an attorney to get advice on whether some action should be taken by you.

The above is general information only. It should not be considered as legal advice applicable to your specific circumstance. Reliable legal advice applicable to your situation cannot be given without a consultation. The above response does not create an attorney client relationship nor should it be considered as a privileged attorney client communication.


A divorce decree entered into anywhere in the U.S. is valid worldwide. Cannot be challenged in a foreign court.

Behar Intl. Counsel 619.234.5962 Kindly be advised that the answer above is only general in nature cannot be construed as legal advice, given that not enough facts are known. It is your responsibility to retain a lawyer to analyze the facts specific to your particular situation in order to give you specific advice. Specific answers will require cognizance of all pertinent facts about your case. Any answers offered on Avvo are of a general nature only, and are not meant to create an attorney-client relationship.


Accord with the prior response. It is unlikely that anybody would waste the money to try to challenge a California divorce Judgment in a foreign court. It wouldn't be a contempt of court in California, but it could possibly be actionable as Abuse of Process.

Please note that this answer does not constitute legal advice, and should not be relied on, as each situation is fact specific, and it is not possible to evaluate a legal problem without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and court pleadings filed in the case. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship.


As with any legal question, a simple answer based on a few facts, might be wrong. For instance, what country? What order is being challenged? Generally, a judgment should be upheld, but some countries might ignore a California court order. Custody or visitation orders protecting children on new circumstances might allow a new order, or at least a temporary one. Seek a consultation with specific facts from a competent attorney in your county.

The comments made here are meant to direct you to receive local consultation from an attorney in your area and ask proper, detailed questions to get the best legal advice upon which you can take appropriate action.

Michael John Harrington

Michael John Harrington


I agree with this attorney. Based on my experience.

Michael John Harrington

Michael John Harrington


Youre divorced but the other party may ltigate some issues in their country. For example, allegations of marital infidelity in some countries is a basis for sole child custody. Or property located in another country may get tied up in litigation their despite your divorce settlement here. More details are needed.

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