We can draft your divorce petition, file it with the court, have your spouse served, and represent you at the court hearing. You will need to provide us with the following documents:
- A valid photo identification such as your passport, driver's license, Voter Registration Card and a valid Immigration ID if you are a foreign national.
- Your marriage certificate. If you were previously married, you will need a copy of your divorce decree or your ex's death certificate for that previous marriage.
- Your minor children's birth certificates.
The ASLA intaker or attorney will ask you questions about the parties' residency, basis for divorce, whether the divorce is uncontested or contested, issues of child custody and visitation rights, child support, division of properties and debts, etc.
It is important to be honest with your answers. Dishonesty could cause your attorney to make decisions that harm your case.
Divorce Law in American Samoa
Relevant statutes governing divorce actions in American Samoa include:
Grounds for divorce: A.S.C.A. §42.0202
The High Court may dissolve any marriage contract and grant a decree of divorce, or may grant a decree of judicial separation, for any one of the following causes:
- habitual cruelty or ill usage;
- desertion for 6 months or more;
- sentence to imprisonment for a term of 10 or more years or for life;
- voluntary continuous separation for a period of 5 years or more.
- irreconcilable differences.
One year residency requirement: A.S.C.A. §42.0206
(a) Except as provided in subsection (b), the petition shall be dismissed if upon the evidence presented the court finds any of the following:
(1) that it has not been established that either the petitioner or respondent has been a bona fide and continuous resident of American Samoa for at least one year next preceding the commencement of the action or proceeding;
Order for maintenance ["alimony", "spousal support"]: A.S.C.A. §42.0209
When the divorce, separation or annulment is granted, the court may make an order for the maintenance of either party it deems proper and just under the circumstances.
Custody of minor children: A.S.C.A. §42.0210
When the divorce, separation or annulment is granted, the court may make a division of, or order with respect to, the property of either or both of the parties as it deems fair and proper and order for the custody, care, maintenance and support of the minor children of the parties.
Restoration of maiden name. A.S.C.A. §42.0211
When the divorce, separation or annulment is granted, the court may restore to the woman the name used by her prior to the marriage when so requested.