Do I have to cite a fault ground for divorce?

When a spouse files for divorce, it can be an emotional time. The person they thought they were supposed to spend forever with did not turn out to be who they thought they wanted to be with forever. This can be a difficult concept for them to wrap their heads around. Divorce can happen for a number of reasons. Since each couple is different, each marriage is different and so is each divorce. When filing for divorce, spouses have the option to avoid citing a fault ground. They can instead cite a no-fault ground. This will no place the blame on either spouse in divorce.

In New Jersey, couples have the option of filing for divorce without claiming a fault ground. Fault grounds usually indicate the fault of one party for the  reason for divorce. However, New Jersey gives spouses the option to cite irreconcilable differences or separation for at least 18 months as the grounds for divorce. With these reasons, neither spouse is responsible for the demise of the marriage. This can allow them to enter into an uncontested divorce.

Can I still cite a fault ground?

Spouses do not have to cite a fault ground due to the no-fault ground laws in New Jersey. However, they have the option to cite a fault ground if they wish. Spouses have the option to cite fault grounds that can include adultery, abandonment, incarceration, physical cruelty or mental cruelty. By citing a fault ground for divorce, these spouses may enter into a contested divorce. This can lead to court proceedings.

Are their requirements before getting a divorce?

If couples decide to go through with a divorce, there are requirements that need to be met before filing. Couples will have to meet the residency requirement to decide which court has jurisdiction over the case. This requires that the spouses have lived in New Jersey for longer than a year before a court may take a divorce case. When the jurisdiction is granted and the grounds for the divorce are established, the complaint for divorce can be drafted. This will start the divorce process for the couple. During a trial, a judge will decide on final decisions such as custody arrangements, alimony and the division of assets if this is needed. However, couples can instead undergo mediation.

If you require strong legal representation for matters related to divorce or family law, Haber Silver & Simpson is here to help. We proudly represent clients in Morris County and throughout the state of New Jersey. Contact our firm today to schedule a consultation.