When researching your different options for divorce in California, you more than likely have seen the term "no fault" divorce. What is a no fault divorce, and how does it apply to your current situation?

What Does No Fault Mean in California?

When you file for divorce, you can base your divorce on various "grounds". For instance, most states allow you to base your divorce on issues of wrongdoing, such as adultery, abandonment and abuse. On the other hand, California offers a "no fault" divorce option. Simply put, this type of divorce means that you do not need to find an excuse or problem to base the separation on. If you and your spouse no longer want to be married, you can end the marriage citing "irreconcilable differences" as grounds for the divorce. Historically, couples needed to find an excuse to file for divorce. This often meant that spouses would either make false accusations against the other or intentionally self-destruct the marriage. Both of these tactics would only lead to more heartache and pain on top of an already failed marriage. With no fault divorce, people can end an marriage without resorting to harmful schemes.

How Does No Fault Grounds Affect Divorce Cases?

Since no fault divorces do not require accusations, you do not need to prove your case in order to get divorced. By comparison, in fault based divorces, accusations of abuse or adultery require effective proof and evidence; otherwise your case can be denied. Going even further, the grounds for a fault based divorce can also be used in other aspects of the case, such as in deciding alimony or custody. So, in states that allow fault based divorces, spouses may use the other spouse's fault as a calculated tactic. In California, since the no fault rule can apply to all divorces, a spouse's fault is not considered when deciding alimony or other aspects. Because of this, the court will look at other factors pertaining to those issues, such as both party's ability to support themselves and their mental and physical health. However, keep in mind that when deciding child custody, a spouse's fault can still be used against them if their fault posed a threat to the child's health or safety. For instance, if your spouse is abusive or addicted to drugs or alcohol, the court will consider those facts when deciding custody.

Contact an Experienced Divorce Attorney to Learn More

What is a no fault divorce? The answer is simple — in California all divorces are considered no fault. If you are considering divorce, speak to a Fresno divorce lawyer who can answer your questions and provide valuable legal guidance. Contact the Law Offices of Rick D. Banks today or call (559)222-4891.
Categories: Divorce