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When is the Divorce Actually Final?

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In California the earliest day on which a marriage may be terminated is at least six (6) months and one day FROM the date that:

  • the spouse or partner who started the divorce had the other spouse or partner served with the petition for divorce and the court summons,

    OR
  • when the other spouse or partner responded to the petition (if he or she
    responded at all).

The divorce is final AFTER:

  • A judge signs the divorce Judgment (Form FL-180).
  • A court clerk mails the divorce judgment to each spouse or partner, with the date that the judgment was filed stamped in the upper right corner.

NOTE: The divorce does not become final automatically at the end of six (6) months:
One of the spouses or partners has to prepare the judgment form, with appropriate attachments, and have it signed by a judge. Then a copy of the judgment has to be given to the other spouse or partner.

Save a copy of the signed Judgment form so that you can show how and when your marital or domestic partnership status ended (you got a divorce).

 

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