If you’re considering divorce for the first time, chances are that you have never thought about whether your divorce was a fault or no-fault divorce. All you may know in the early stages is that you want to begin the process of legally ending your marriage.
In New Jersey, your divorce is either a fault or no-fault divorced. Simply put, someone or no one is to blame. However, the law is unsurprisingly more specific.
Getting into the details
A no-fault divorce means that there are irreconcilable differences between you and your spouse with little chance for reconciliation. To qualify for a no-fault divorce, you must have lived in New Jersey for at least one year and legally separated for 18 months or lived in the state for one year while experiencing irreconcilable differences for at least six months.
New Jersey law considers an at-fault divorce when there is a specific reason for the divorce. You must provide evidence why you are seeking the divorce for a court to grant you a divorce. Some common grounds for an at-fault divorce include:
- Desertion: Occurs when you or your spouse voluntarily leaves the other for at least one year.
- Extreme cruelty: Is the presence of emotional or physical abuse and even general unpleasantness. These cases require several months of documentation.
- Addiction and substance abuse: This ground can apply to drug or alcohol abuses and addictions.
Much like a no-fault divorce, you and your spouse must have also lived in New Jersey for more than one year to meet the law’s residency requirement.
Your divorce is unique
No matter which way you go, divorce is an intricate process with much at stake. Divorcees have many rights throughout the process, and they may not be entirely aware of them. Very few divorces are identical, and what led to the end of another person’s marriage is likely inapplicable to yours.