MyDivorcePapers Blog

We're here to make your life easier to manage and to help you begin your new start.

No-Fault Divorce LawsAll states are now on the no-fault irretrievably broken bandwagon, and for good reason. It turns out the good ol’ days actually were not so good.

The last state to make the change was New York in 2010. The old fault-based grounds for divorce made a party seeking a divorce prove that the other is at fault for of one of the following indiscretions:

  • Heartless / inhumane treatment
  • Desertion / abandonment of the plaintiff by the defendant for an amount of time greater than or equal to one year
  • Confinement of the defendant in prison for a period of three or more consecutive years after the marriage of plaintiff and defendant;
  • Adultery

Requiring fault-based grounds for divorce means that showing of irreconcilable differences is insufficient, and many people who wanted divorces couldn’t get them.

This must-prove system is not worth the costs financially and emotionally speaking. Forcing couples in relationships that are falling apart to rehash their painful and embarrassing problems can open old wounds and make for a hostile process.  Some say that the fault-based system only harms people seeking help, and therefore was completely done away with.

In an interview with LemonDrop Carol Sanger of Columbia Law School maintains that fault-based divorce law was put in place by government to keep people from doing the big bad – divorce. She states, “One way to keep people married is to make divorce hard to get. One way to make a divorce hard to get is to say you can only get divorced if you are divorcing for a state-approved reason, like adultery, insanity, or extreme cruelty.” This just makes people more miserable, and it was about time that all states got on board.

For divorce attorneys and law practices like mine in Clearwater, Florida, we have not had to deal with fault-based grounds for some time. In 1971 we decided on the no-fault divorce policy, which most clients care about because it relates to property division. It means that infidelity may not always be considered relevant when determining equitable distribution of marital property.

Even if an attorney can prove the spouse to have been unfaithful, they may not be punished by the allocation of a smaller portion of the marital property.

That being said, if said adulterous spouse has also misappropriated the marital income or misused the marital property in some way, an exception can be made to the no-fault divorce policy and the court may take that into consideration when determining equitable distribution.

In conclusion, the no-fault policy is better for everyone involved, and property division is usually done so fairly.

Howard Iken is an experienced divorce lawyer who also specializes in bankruptcy and criminal law. Howard is currently the Managing Attorney at Ayo and Iken PLC which can help those looking for divorce attorneys in Clearwater, Florida. Visit his website at

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Home | Leadership Team | Help Center | Privacy Policy | Terms & Conditions | Disclaimer

© 2014, All Rights Reserved.

Back to Top