Can Your Spouse Prevent The Court From Granting A No-Fault Divorce?

The grounds for your divorce, or the reasons your marriage ended, must be mentioned on your divorce petition when you file for divorce. Divorcing couples may choose to file for a “fault-based” divorce or a “no-fault” divorce in some states. Some states only permit no-fault divorces.

The primary difference between a fault-based and no-fault divorce is that the former involves one spouse alleging that the other’s actions were the reason behind the failure of the marriage. In contrast, neither party should accuse the other of misconduct in a no-fault divorce. Speak to an Andover divorce lawyer to discuss your marriage situation and how to approach a divorce.

Can a spouse make the court reject a no-fault divorce appeal?

A spouse cannot prevent a no-fault divorce in court. Opposing the other spouse’s divorce request is an uncompromising difference in and of itself, which would support the divorce.

However, by persuading the court that the accusations of wrongdoing are untrue, a spouse can prevent a fault-based divorce. Alternatively, a spouse may acknowledge wrongdoing but provide an explanation or defense for their actions, for example:

  • Condonation.

To condone is to agree with the actions of another. For instance, the court might conclude that a wife supported her husband’s adultery if she didn’t object to it. If a wife files for divorce because her husband has an affair, the husband may contest the divorce on the grounds that she approved of his actions.

  • Connivance.

Connivance means to create an environment where the other person is compelled to do something wrong. A judge might conclude that, for instance, a wife who invites another woman over to stay at her home with her husband while she is away for a week is complicit in his adultery. The husband may defend himself with the reason that she conspired or set up his actions if the wife files for divorce on the grounds that he committed adultery.

  • Provocation.

Provocation is when one spouse encourages or compels the other to commit misconduct. For instance, if a husband files for divorce on the grounds that his spouse left him, the wife may file for an additional claim, arguing that the husband’s actions caused the couple’s breakup.

  • Collusion.

In states where a no-fault divorce requires a separation period, some couples may attempt to speed up the process by fabricating a ground for divorce. The agreement to avoid the waiting period is commonly known as collusion. One spouse may bring up the conspiracy as a defense if the other decides they no longer want a divorce (before the judge permits it).

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