Divorce, despite being classified as a family law case, is also seen as a civil law case. This is due to the fact that divorces deal with ending marriages, which are legal contracts. To start a divorce process, you have to submit a petition to the court. The court then issues a divorce decree, marking the official termination of the marriage.
Exploring Different Kinds of Divorce
Despite being family law matters, divorces are also considered civil law cases. The various forms of divorce include contested and uncontested divorce, no-fault divorce, and collaborative divorce.
This kind of divorce occurs when the couple can’t agree on key issues like child custody, property division, or spousal support. If an agreement isn’t possible, the court will make the final decision.
In an uncontested divorce, both partners agree on all aspects of the divorce, making the process quicker and less costly than in a contested divorce.
A no-fault divorce is granted without blaming either party. It is usually used when the couple has been separated for a long time and there’s no hope of them getting back together.
A collaborative divorce sees the couple, with the help of their lawyers, working out the terms of the divorce together. It’s typically faster and cheaper than a contested divorce.
How Does a Divorce Case Unfold?
The steps in a divorce case depend on the type of divorce and the court in which it’s filed. However, some common steps are usually followed. Firstly, a petition is filed to kick-start the divorce process.
Once the petition is filed, the other partner is served with the divorce papers and has a certain time to respond. If an agreement can’t be reached, the case might proceed to trial. After the divorce is finalized, a divorce decree is issued, marking the official end of the marriage.
Common Reasons for Divorce
The reasons or grounds for divorce differ depending on where the case is filed. However, some common reasons are often cited:
- Irreconcilable differences: This is a common reason when certain differences lead to the end of a marriage.
- Adultery: If a spouse has an affair, it can be a ground for divorce.
- Desertion: If one spouse leaves the other with no plans of coming back, it’s considered desertion.
- Abuse: Physical, emotional, or verbal abuse are often cited reasons.
- Abandonment: Like desertion, abandonment occurs when one spouse leaves the other with no intention of returning.
- Cruel and inhuman treatment: When a spouse’s behavior inflicts physical or mental suffering, it’s considered cruel and inhuman treatment.
- Mental illness: If a spouse’s mental illness makes the marriage impossible to continue, it can be a reason for divorce.
- Incarceration: If a spouse is jailed for a long period, it makes it hard to continue the marriage.
- Drug addiction: A spouse’s drug or alcohol addiction can also be a ground for divorce.
- Refusal to consummate the marriage: If a spouse refuses to have sexual intercourse, it can be a reason for divorce.
Why You Might Need a Family Lawyer
Although it’s not mandatory to have a lawyer for a divorce, it’s often beneficial. Divorces can get complicated and having a lawyer can help you navigate the process while protecting your rights.
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