A Primer On No-fault Divorce In New Jersey

Regardless of whether a person is ready to file for divorce tomorrow or simply considering it as one of many options available to them, there is a very good chance that they are going to have questions about everything the process entails from the initial filing of the complaint to important divorce-related topics as child custody and alimony.

This not only perfectly understandable, but also an indication that they are approaching the matter in the right frame of mind, meaning they have the proper appreciation of what a dissolution of marriage can mean for them and their family.

In the interests of helping people in these situations learn more about the process, today’s post will take a brief look at some basic background information on no-fault divorce here in New Jersey.

In the overwhelming majority of circumstances, people in the Garden State will end up filing a no-fault divorce complaint. That’s because unlike fault-based divorce, no-fault divorce does not mandate that the person seeking the split has to provide any sort of definitive evidence that one side was responsible for hastening the end of the marriage.

In general, a no-fault fault divorce can either be based on separation or what is known as irreconcilable differences:

  • In a no-fault divorce based on separation, a person must be able to satisfy the following conditions: both spouses must have lived in New Jersey for 12 consecutive months prior to the divorce filing, both spouses must have lived in separate residences for a minimum of 18 consecutive months prior to the divorce filing, and there must be no reasonable chance of the couple reconciling.
  • In a no-fault divorce based on irreconcilable differences, a person must be able to satisfy the following conditions: both spouses must have lived in New Jersey for 12 consecutive months prior to the divorce filing, both spouses must have endured irreconcilable differences for a minimum of 6 months, these irreconcilable differences must create the inference that the marriage should be terminated, and there must be no reasonable chance of the couple reconciling.

While the above information was meant to provide some basic background information, those actively considering a divorce should strongly consider speaking with an experienced legal professional who can not only explain the law, but examine their unique circumstances and outline their options moving forward.

Source: Legal Services of New Jersey, “Divorce: In New Jersey,” 2012

Date Published: March 1, 2017


Written by: Cooper Levenson, P.A.

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