Divorce is a painful and extremely difficult process. Knowing how divorce laws function and understanding the court’s role in a divorce can help to make this transition smoother and easier, however.
Divorce laws govern the dissolution of a marriage. Every country has its own laws regarding divorce and, in fact, they can vary from state to state or province to province within a nation. Knowing your jurisdiction’s laws can keep a bad situation from becoming worse, and save you future turmoil.
In the United States, divorce laws, in general, provide two basic forms of divorce: fault based and no-fault based. However, even in some jurisdictions whose laws do not require a party to claim fault of their partner, a court may still take into account the behavior of the parties when dividing property, debts, evaluating custody, and support.
Fault-based divorces can be contested and may involve allegations of collusion of the parties, connivance, or provocation by the other party.
In a no-fault divorce, the dissolution of a marriage does not require an allegation or proof of fault of either party. Forty-nine states have adopted no-fault laws, with grounds for divorce including incompatibility, irreconcilable differences, and irremediable breakdown of the marriage. New York is the sole exception where they still require a proof of fault.