divorce papers

Divorce rates have been steadily increasing for years. Certain grounds are accepted when filing for a fault-based divorce. For information on valid reasons for divorce in New Jersey, keep reading and contact a Sussex County, Sparta divorce attorney. An experienced lawyer is equipped with a deep understanding of the law and the knowledge required to ensure the best outcome for your divorce, whether it is fault-based or no-fault.

What is the Difference Between Fault-Based and No-Fault Divorce?

Though the qualifications will vary, every state in the U.S. accepts no-fault divorces. The majority of the states, New Jersey included, allow couples to file for either no-fault or fault-based divorces. These are known as mixed or hybrid states for divorce.

In a no-fault divorce, a spouse can file to end the marriage simply because it is no longer a functioning relationship and they do not wish to be in it anymore. A no-fault divorce cannot be objected to by the other spouse. Valid grounds for a no-fault divorce include irreconcilable differences or that the marriage is irretrievably broken and has been for at least six months. There is no need to prove that the marriage deteriorated at the fault of either party.

A fault-based divorce must be filed with a valid reason. The filing spouse must state what wrongdoing their spouse committed that culminated in them filing for divorce. The misconduct must be proven in court for the filing spouse to be granted a fault-based divorce.

What Are Valid Grounds for Divorce?

In New Jersey, there are generally several valid reasons for filing for a fault-based divorce. Acceptable grounds for divorce are typically certain types of misconduct or behavior on the part of one of the spouses, but they can encompass a multitude of different factors. Some widely accepted reasons to file for a fault-based divorce in New Jersey include the following.

  • Adultery: If your spouse cheats on you by participating in sexual intercourse with someone else, it is grounds for divorce.
  • Desertion: Abandonment by your spouse for a certain amount of time, usually one year or longer, is reason enough to file for divorce.
  • Cruelty: If your spouse is endangering your life or health through any kind of physical or emotional abuse it can be valid grounds for divorce.
  • Addiction: You can use this to file if your spouse has been abusing drugs or alcohol for 12 months or longer.
  • Deviant sexual behavior: Deviant sexual acts without your permission or consent can be claimed when filing for divorce.
  • Imprisonment: Your spouse being sentenced to jail for 18 consecutive months or longer is a valid reason for divorce.
  • Separation: If you and your spouse haven’t lived together for 18 months or more and there is no potential to come back together you can file on this basis.
  • Mental illness: While it is not considered misconduct, mental illness can be a valid reason for divorce in certain instances. If your spouse develops a severe mental illness that causes them to be institutionalized for certain periods it can be grounds for divorce.