Divorce, otherwise known as “the dissolution of marriage” is basically a legal process whereby a judge terminates a marriage, restoring the parties to a status of being single and giving them the freedom to remarry. Apart from dissolving the union, divorce proceedings also deal with matters such as child support, distribution of property, spousal support, division of debt and child custody – just to mention but a few.
And since there are different states in the US, the process is governed by the laws of the particular state where the divorce takes place. It is also important to note that these laws vary from one state to another. Whether it is a divorce lawyer or a drug possession lawyer, if you need a specific help for a case, make sure to look for the best lawyer in town.
Grounds for divorce under US divorce law
Grounds for divorce vary from one state to another. There are states which require minimal grounds of fault, while others allow divorce proceedings under no fault grounds.
- Fault divorce
This occurs when one partner accuses the other of being not committed in the marriage by proving marital misconduct or other judicial requirements for the termination. These often occur where there is desertion, abuse, abandonment and the inability to engage in sexual intercourse.
- No fault divorce
In this situation, no party is required to prove marital misconduct or fault. The parties are simply required to state a credible reason for the dissolution that is recognized by the court. Such reasons include irretrievably broken, incompatibility and irreconcilable differences. Some states require that the couples should have lived separately for several months before no-fault divorce proceedings can begin
- Uncontested divorce
This is a proceeding whereby the person sued for divorce doesn’t contest and instead comes to an agreement during the court proceedings with the suing partner. In such a situation, terms for the divorce are agreed upon by the two parties. These are generally less expensive and more amicable than the rest.
Terms of the divorce under US divorce laws
Divorce terms are normally determined by the court. However, it might take into consideration post nuptial and prenuptial agreements. In some cases, the court allows the divorcing parties to agree on the terms, but the agreement is subject to the court’s approval. If the parties are able to come to an agreement before filling, it is referred to as an uncontested divorce. Such a divorce is quicker, more amicable and less expensive when compared to a disputed divorce.
After a successful divorce, the US Divorce law allows the property to be divided under two schemes. These are:
- Community property
Under community property, both the husband and the wife equally own the money and property acquired during the marriage to the date of separation, regardless of the partner who acquired it. However, each gets to keep their premarital assets, or basically what they had acquired before the marriage.
- Equitable distribution
Under equitable distribution, the couples accumulated property is fairly divided but not necessarily equally. When determining the share of each party, the court takes into consideration factors such as, the market value of the property, contribution to the acquiring of the property, the emotional value of the property, economic consequences of the division and any other factor that contributes to equity and fairness.
Under US divorce law, when children are involved, courts rule in the best interest of the children, in making sure that they are provided for and are under the custody of the parent with the best dispensation to provide a supportive and safe home environment. Under all the states, parents are required to present their parenting plan which includes visitation and custody privileges. This can be achieved via a court hearing or a written agreement between the divorcing parties.
If you are looking for more advice or information on US divorce laws, you need to talk to a lawyer or you can check this out. This can have a direct impact on the rest of your life.