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German Law/Divorce Decree from Germany

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QUESTION: Hi Andreas,
   My name is Dennis, I am trying to find the process to retrieve my divorce decree from Bavaria. My ex wife and I were married in USA - New Jersey, she went back to Bavaria and filed for the divorce. This happened over fifteen years ago. In the mean time I've lost my copy, I've been searching the internet to find out how to get another one. Is it possible to hire a paralegal being this is public records? Could you please send me in the right direction?
Thank you,
Dennis

ANSWER: Hello Dennis,

there are several options:

- If you remember the court that handled the divorce, you can contact the court directly. (There is no central register of divorce decrees and they are not public records.)
- If you don't remember the court, it must have been the one where your ex-wife lived at the time of the divorce. Maybe you remember the town or can somehow find out?
- You could ask your ex-wife or any relatives of her.
- Did you have a lawyer in the divorce process? If so, he/she might still have a copy, or at least they will remember which court handled your divorce.
- Did she serve the divorce paperwork on you through the US authorities, as required by the Hague Service Convention? Then the US DOJ or the agency that served you might still have a record.

For more on divorce law in Germany, please see my FAQ: https://andreasmoser.wordpress.com/2009/08/07/10-faq-on-divorce-in-germany/

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Hi Andreas,
  1. She handled the divorce, I was not involved in the proceedings.

  2. I know she lived in Regensburg

  3. I have not spoken to her in over fifteen years. I do not know
     any of her relatives, I never met any of them.

  4. I never retained counsel

  5. I'm pretty sure they came though the U.S. mail. (not 100%)
     It was a long time ago. I remember signing the papers and
     sending them back to her. I also remember there was a copy
     in the package, I've since lost it and I'm trying to replace it.

Answer
If your wife lived in Regensburg the Regensburg Family Court handled the divorce.

Contact the Amtsgericht Regensburg with details of you, your ex-wife and your marriage (dates of birth, places of birth, names, place and time of marriage), and they should be able to look up the case file easily. Then they can send you another copy of the divorce decree.

This is the website of the court in Regensburg: https://www.justiz.bayern.de/gericht/ag/r/ Simply send them an e-mail to poststelle@ag-r.bayern.de with as many details as possible.

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Andreas Moser

Expertise

Extensive experience in international family law, especially international child abductions and child custody cases. All other areas of German law as well: constitutional law, criminal law, business and contract law, immigration law, inheritance law, and so on.

Experience

Lawyer in Germany from 2002 to 2009. Lawyer for US Army JAG Corps before. Bar-certified specialisation in family law and in administrative law. Articles and lectures about international and domestic family law.

Publications
www.andreasmoser.wordpress.com

Education/Credentials
2000 Law Degree from University of Regensburg, Germany 2002 admitted to the bar (until 2009) 2013 MA Philosophy at the Open University, UK

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