Divorcing couples in every state are required to satisfy certain requirements
in order to have their marriage dissolved by the courts. These requirements
are known as “grounds for divorce” and vary from state to
state. In Rhode Island, divorcing spouses must indicate the grounds on
which they are pursuing a separation on their official
divorce papers. Couples can separate on either no-fault grounds or due to the
fault of one or both of the spouses.
No-Fault vs. Fault Divorces in Rhode Island
A no-fault divorce is a separation that does not require the spouse requesting
a divorce to indicate that the other spouse did something wrong. These
grounds can be cited if a spouse simply does not wish to be married anymore,
or if irreconcilable differences have caused a breakdown of the marriage.
Additionally, a no-fault divorce can be sought if a couple has been living
separately without cohabitation for a period of three years.
On the other hand, a spouse can initiate divorce proceedings on fault grounds
and due to the wrongful actions of the other spouse.
The following are all acceptable reasons for a fault-based divorce:
- Extreme cruelty
- Willful desertion
- Continued drug or alcohol abuse
- Neglectful behavior
- Other gross misbehaviors
Reasons to File for Divorce on Fault Grounds
Depending on the specific issues surrounding a couple’s situation,
a spouse may want to file for divorce on fault grounds in order to gain
an advantage in court. For instance, if a spouse files for divorce because
their husband or wife is a habitual drug abuser, the non-abusing spouse
will likely have a greater chance of achieving a favorable verdict for
issues such as
child custody. Fault divorces can potentially sway a judge’s decision in the non-offending
spouse’s favor, though this is not always the case. If you are considering
filing for divorce, it is best that you consult with an attorney to determine
which grounds would be more strategically advantageous.
Contact a Skilled Divorce Lawyer in Providence
At TJC ESQ, our firm’s skilled Rhode Island divorce attorneys have
helped countless clients achieve smooth divorces with our compassionate
and results-driven advocacy. Having earned a 10.0 Superb Avvo Rating and
an AV® Preeminent™ Rating by Martindale-Hubbell, your case is
sure to be in excellent hands.
To find out more about what our 30+ years’ of family law
experience can do for you, call (401) 216-4414 or request a free consultation