Divorce

Can Your Divorce Be Denied?

In our society divorce is a common word. The days of divorce causing scandal and shame are long gone. However, when a family goes through a divorce they find it is anything but a normal everyday occurrence that people go through.

State Laws

Every state has laws regarding divorce. All the states in the United States allow a couple to file for a no-fault divorce. This means you agree that the marriage is over. Your differences cannot be reconciled and your marriage cannot be saved. Some states only allow no-fault divorce. They do not allow the option of filing for a divorce that assigns blame against one partner to the other. These states include:

  • California
  • Colorado
  • District of Columbia
  • Florida
  • Hawaii
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nebraska
  • Nevada
  • Oregon
  • Washington
  • Wisconsin

If you live in a different state and you wish to file an at-fault divorce, you need to contact your attorney. There are several grounds for an at-fault divorce that will hold up in court. They include, but are not limited to:

  • Adultery
  • Incest
  • Imprisonment
  • Bigamy
  • Abuse

It is important to note that filing for an at-fault divorce requires proof that will be submitted to the judge. It is also important that you and your children (if you have children) remain safe while you are seeking a divorce. An attorney is the best place to begin. He can advise you on what you need and how the procedures will progress so you can make a plan to be safe during the process.

Why would the judge turn the divorce down?

A judge is in a unique position. While he is charged by the American people to listen to both sides and make a fair and impartial judgment, he is also required by law to ensure all legalities of the case are met.

When a person is sued for divorce, he or she must be served with legal documents that explain in detail what is happening. This is not handled over the phone or verbally. The papers explain where they need to be and the date and time. The results of the summons will affect their lives. This could include their visitation with their children, where they will live, how much they will pay in support, and what they will take with them from the joint property they own. If they have been properly served and they do not show up, the requests of the person suing are usually granted. But, what if the person suing did not properly serve them? In that case, the divorce is usually denied. 

There are several requirements in a divorce filing. Each form has a purpose and none of them can be overlooked. If you miss a required form the judge may dismiss your case and deny your divorce.

If during your filing process it is discovered that you do not meet the state residency requirements to file in the state where you filed, the judge will deny your divorce.

If you have not shown accurate reasons why you are dividing the custody/visitation of the children (and sometimes pets), property, and assets of the family the way you presented them, the judge will usually deny your divorce. A judge is not going to be unfair and let one person have the lion’s share of everything earned in a marriage.

Fraud

When we think f fraud, we think of very high-level business people “cooking the books” trying to get away with not paying taxes or sliding sales under the radar. The same happens with marriages. When someone has a long term marriage and they have built a successful business, they may start to worry when the winds of romance seem to shift. Perhaps they feel divorce is in the air. Whatever the reason, they begin opening accounts that their spouse (and CPA) knows nothing about. They build it up until it is substantial. When those dollars are exposed, a judge will halt the divorce and usually order a complete audit.

Fraud will cost you the divorce you are seeking, even on a lower level. This is rare but not unheard of. This means you have no intention of breaking up. You are going through a divorce so you can benefit in some way. One example would be, there is a program that will send in workers to do home repairs at no cost for divorced women over 60 that are unable to afford them. You file for divorce and they repair your roof, paint your house, and pave your drive-way. You use their reference to get free food and money for your electric bill. This is a fraud. The judge will not grant you a divorce. Further, you could be facing charges.

Note: In some cases, fraud will result in an annulment instead of a divorce.

Children

The judge will not grant your divorce until you have worked out all the issues regarding child support and child custody. You can go through mediation and arbitration for help, but you need to have it hashed out or no divorce is going to happen. Your next step will be going to trial to get it settled and that is not good for anyone.

Spouse won’t sign the papers

This is a delay tactic that will not work for very long. If you have done everything you are supposed to do, you may have to have your spouse formally served with the outline of everything included. If your partner does not respond or if they do not show up for court, the judge can approve a default divorce.

In order to avoid the delays, the “do-overs” and the mistakes, hire an attorney. It will be much easier and will reduce your stress level. Let the attorney do what he is trained to do. Let this difficult time in your life pass as easily as possible so you can begin the next chapter of your life.

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