Divorcing in Tennessee: Know the law

Getting a divorce in Tennessee is not the same as in other states, although the process itself is similar. Tennessee has its own laws and regulations that dictate when and if people can get a divorce in the state.

If you're considering a divorce in Tennessee, know that it is an equitable distribution state. That means that any marital property you have is divided equitably, not equally, among the two parties. The good thing about equitable distribution states is generally that they are fairer to the parties. However, you'll need to make a good argument for the assets you want. If you and your spouse can agree on the division of your property, that's even better.

Keep in mind that you may choose to divorce in another state if you currently live there, even if you got married in Tennessee. Tennessee doesn't have residency requirements for divorce so long as any acts leading to divorce took place when the plaintiff was a resident. If the grounds for divorce took place outside the state, then either the plaintiff or defendant must live in the state for at least six months before filing for divorce or a year if you were in the military.

If there is no fault causing the divorce, then you will need to separate for two years before you can get a divorce in Tennessee. There is also a requirement that you have no minor children to seek a no-fault divorce. This is different from many other states, where the time limits and requirements vary and may be much shorter. Our site has more on divorce and what to expect if you divorce in Tennessee.

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