A “no-fault” divorce means one spouse must simply state a belief that the marriage is over, or “irretrievably broken.” Essentially, a no-fault divorce law gives either party the freedom to sue for divorce with only the claim of “irreconcilable differences.” Born from these laws was the concept of unilateral divorce; either spouse feeling the urge to end the marriage can do so and is free to leave. Most divorces in Georgia are no-fault divorces.
A no fault divorce is filed with the court on the basis of irreconcilable differences between the spouses, rather than fault grounds, such as adultery, habitual intoxication, or desertion. A common misperception is that this means there was no marital misconduct on the part of either of the parties, or that issues pertaining to the marriage and divorce are uncontested. At Stearns-Montgomery & Proctor, our Georgia no fault divorce lawyers have been handling these types of cases for three decades. Our experience is that while fault may not be stated as a reason for the divorce, it can still have an impact on your divorce proceedings.
Misconceptions About No Fault Divorce
No fault divorces are often confused with uncontested divorce cases, in which both parties are in agreement on issues relating to finances and children. The fact is, these cases may require extensive negotiations to resolve disputes over the following divorce related issues:
- Marital property, asset, and debt division;
- Child custody and time sharing arrangements;
- Child support payments;
- Spousal support and maintenance;
- Payment of attorneys fees by either party;
Filing a no-fault divorce eliminates fault grounds, which are listed under Section 19-5-3 of the Georgia Code, as the reason for filing. It does not mean the other party is blameless. Marital conduct, such as reckless spending and affairs, may still be a factor when negotiating your divorce settlement.
Our Divorce Attorneys Can Help Protect You
In Georgia no fault divorce cases, it is still important to have a strong legal advocate on your side to ensure your interests are protected. Reach out and contact Stearns-Montgomery & Proctor today to see how we can assist you.