Hot! Guam Court Lacked Jurisdiction in Divorce Case

The Supreme Court of Guam has issued an opinion in Banes v. Banes finding that the Superior Court lacked jurisdiction over David Banes in his divorce case and agreeing to issue the “writ of prohibition” he sought.

The case centered on whether the Guam Superior Court had jurisdiction over David in his divorce from his wife Oxana.
When David had filed for divorce from Oxana she moved to Guam where David had bought her a condominium. In Guam Oxana filed for divorce from her husband but David asked the Guam Superior Court to dismiss the divorce action claiming that the Superior Court lacked personal jurisdiction over him.

The motion was denied leading David to file a writ of prohibition in the Supreme Court of Guam. In an opinion authored by Chief Justice F. Philip Carbullido the court concluded that the trial court must have personal jurisdiction before setting aside a Prenuptial Agreement, ordering spousal support, and dividing marital property.

Courts in Thailand divorce cases must also have personal jurisdiction before the divorce can be fully complete. However, if one spouse is living abroad that country’s court may cause complications for the splitting couple.

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