What To Know About At-Fault Divorces

Are you looking into getting a divorce, but not sure if it is appropriate to use an at-fault divorce as a reason to do so? If so, it will help to know the following things about this type of divorce. 

At-Fault Divorces May Not Be Allowed Where You Live

First of all, you need to figure out if your state even allows for at-fault divorces. There are states that are strictly no-fault divorce states, meaning you are unable to place blame on your spouse when filing the official divorce petition. Therefore, an at-fault divorce may not even be an option for you based on local laws.

At-Fault Divorces Must Have Specific Reasons To Justify Them

Know that if your state does allow at-fault divorces, you still need a valid reason to do so. A common reason is cruelty, which can be an isolated incident or a combination of multiple incidents where you feel like your spouse acted cruelly towards you in the marriage. Cruelty can also extend to physical or mental abuse as well. An obvious reason for an at-fault divorce is adultery, but it has to go beyond speculation. You must have some sort of evidence of adultery taking place, or else it cannot be used as a reason for an at-fault divorce. 

At-Fault Divorces Prevent The Need For Separation

An at-fault divorce gives you a few benefits when it is an option, such as avoiding any mandatory separation laws that would typically happen with a no-fault divorce. If you are looking to get divorced quickly and know that your marriage cannot be reconciled, then an at-fault divorce can help move things along rather than just delay what is inevitably going to happen.

At-Fault Divorces Can Give You More Marital Assets

In the states where an at-fault divorce is legal, know that it will give you an advantage when it comes to dividing marital assets. You may be seen as deserving more of those shared assets because you did not cause the divorce, and be more likely to get what you want as a result. If it was a no-fault divorce, then assets would likely be split in a 50/50 manner when possible. 

At-Fault Divorces Can Be Contested

Know that simply qualifying and filing for an at-fault divorce may not be enough. Your spouse can always contest your at-fault divorce filing and try to get it changed to a no-fault divorce. This is when you'll likely need a lawyer to help argue on your behalf so you can maintain the filing for an at-fault divorce. 

For more information, contact a family lawyer.