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International expat divorce lawyer in France 

International amicable out of court divorce in France

​Amicable divorce (or mutual consent divorce) is the most straightforward type of expat divorce in France that does not require to go to court. 


Both parties must agree on all terms of the divorce, including separation of property, child custody and child support and spousal maintenance.

The agreement on the various aspects of the divorce can either be reached directly by the parties, or with the help of the lawyers or  via mediation.

The reached agreement is put into a written divorce contract, prepared by the lawyers of each party and registered by a French notary.

The duration of this type of expat divorce depends on the progress of the discussions between the parties. The minimum duration is 1 month.

There are however a certain number of pitfalls that need to be taken into account in this type of divorce.


International expat divorce in court in France

Based on the circumstances of each divorce, there are various options for expat divorce in court in France.

Accepted divorce: both parties agree on divorcing but certain consequences like asset distribution, custody arrangements or spousal maintenance remain to be settled in court.

Divorce for permanent marriage breakdown: if you have been living separately for at least one year, you can file for this type of divorce, which does not require assigning blame to either one of you

Fault divorce: this form of divorce can be pursued in case of abuse, domestic violence or infidelity. The person filing for divorce must provide evidence of fault.

Based on the type of divorce pursued the duration of court proceedings vary from 1 year to several years.

Alimony during international divorce in France

During ​an international expat divorce procedure in France, the person with the lower income is generally entitled to alimony for him or herself (spousal alimony).

Spousal alimony can be set either by the judge during an expat court divorce in France or by mutual agreement by the parties with the assessment of their lawyers.

There is no formula to determine the amount of alimony in France. Alimony in France is based on the lower income party's needs, living standard and the higher income party's financial capacity.

Alimony is paid on a monthly basis throughout the entire duration of the divorce procedure.

Spousal alimony is added to possible monthly child support.

Spousal maintenance following international divorce in France

Once an international expat divorce becomes final, spousal alimony is replaced by spousal maintenance.

Whilst spousal alimony is paid on a monthly basis, spousal maintenance is a larger amount usually paid in a lump sum to the lower income party by the higher income party.

However, spousal maintenance is not automatically due just because there is an income disparity.

There is no official formula to determine if and how much spousal maintenance is due in France.

The amount depends on a series of factors including: duration of the marriage, age and sacrifices made by the requesting party for the family. Spousal maintenance is determined on a case by case basis.

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