New Jersey Grounds for Divorce
Do you need to know more about the New Jersey grounds for divorce? A party wishing to divorce must decide upon which specific “ground” they will base their divorce. New Jersey statutes are clear that when a couple wishes to divorce, they must cite a specific ground before their divorce will be granted. Specifically, New Jersey’s divorce statute enumerates nine grounds that a party may plead to the Court in order to get their divorce granted. Those nine grounds for divorce are as follows:
- Desertion for a term of 12 months or more;
- Extreme cruelty (physical or mental abuse that endangers the safety or health of one of the parties);
- Separation for a period of at least 18 consecutive months, with no reasonable prospect of reconciliation;
- Addiction to narcotics and/or habitual drunkenness;
- Institutionalization for mental illness for a period of 24 or more consecutive months;
- Imprisonment of a party for 18 or more consecutive months after the marriage;
- Deviant sexual conduct voluntarily performed upon another party without the consent of the other spouse; and
- Irreconcilable differences which have caused the breakdown of the marriage for a period of 6 months, and there is no reasonable prospect of reconciliation.
New Jersey Grounds for Divorce | Fault VS No Fault
These nine grounds can be separated into two categories: fault and no-Fault. A fault-based ground requires the party seeking the divorce to prove or demonstrate to the court specific instances of marital misconduct evidencing the particular fault ground that they pled. A “no-fault” ground, on the other hand, is simply a ground that a party may plead in their divorce papers that does not require them to put blame on the other party.
New Jersey Grounds for Divorce | Two No Fault Grounds
Of New Jersey’s nine grounds for divorce, two are “no-fault” grounds. Those two grounds are “separation for a period of 18 months” and “irreconcilable differences.” When a party files for divorce alleging either of these two grounds, courts presume that there is nothing further the parties can do to preserve the marriage and will generally grant the divorce without delving into any of the specific acts of marital misconduct by the parties.
If you have any questions about the grounds for divorce, please call our Parsippany divorce lawyer today for a free consultation.