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Is Rhode Island a No Fault Divorce State?

Yes, Rhode Island is a no fault divorce state. This means parties do not have to provide “grounds” for divorce. Either spouse can file for divorce simply because the marriage did not work out, or in legalese “irreconcilable differences.” Alternatively, you can file for a no fault divorce if you have lived apart for three or more years. A Rhode Island divorce lawyer can help you with this process.

When filing for a fault divorce, you must provide grounds. You must present sufficient proof to the court that your marital situation warrants a divorce by the grounds you are requesting. According to the General Laws of Rhode Island - Title 15 , Chapters 15-5-2 15-5-3, 15-5-3.1 1505-5, you can use these grounds for a fault divorce:

  • Impotency
  • Adultery
  • Extreme cruelty
  • Willful desertion for five years of either of the parties
  • Continued drunkenness
  • The habitual and excessive use of opium, morphine, or chloral;
  • Neglect and refusal, for the period of at least one year next before the filing of the petition
  • Any other gross misbehavior and wickedness

In general, fault divorces are more complicated than no fault divorce. They may involve instances of domestic violence, substance abuse, abandonment and other painful circumstances. There may be many years of anger and resentment. However, simply because there are no grounds for divorce does not mean the divorce will be uncontested and uncomplicated. It can take time to decide upon child custody, alimony and asset division in both fault and no fault divorces. Rely upon your Providence, RI divorce lawyers to make the smartest decisions regarding your case.

Divorce laws are confusing for even the most intelligent people. Kirshenbaum Law Associates sifts through the laws and statutes applicable to your case so you don’t have to worry. We walk our clients through all aspects of their divorce proceedings with the respect they deserve.