Actually, when married couples have a healthy relationship, it has a positive impact on their physical as well as mental health. In addition to that, kids of happy couples grow up in a warm atmosphere. As a result, they usually have less mental, social and educational problems. However, sometimes you have to make a decision of ending your marriage. Well, it can be a quite painful decision, isn’t it? In some cases, when spouses feel there is no ‘’light’’ in their life as a couple, but only ‘’darkness’’, divorce can help them start a new life. According to the American Psychological Association, from 40 to 50% of married people divorce in the U.S. Did you make up your mind to end your marriage? Are you from California? Then, you should become aware of the legal grounds for divorce in California.
Filing for divorce in California
In fact, laws differ from state to state and this refers to divorce laws and the grounds for divorce as well. It’s worth noting that California Family Code refers to laws related to the dissolution of marriage, separation, and annulment, as well as grounds for divorce. In addition to that, you should also know that California is a no-fault divorce state. ‘’What does this mean?’’ Probably, this is the question that you have in mind right now. Well, let’s clarify the meaning of ‘’no-fault divorce state.’’ This means that in case of filing for divorce you have no right to refer to your spouse’s wrongdoings as a reason for the divorce. It’s interesting to point out that California is the first state to pass no-fault divorce law. Why? The reason is that it has certain benefits. The major one is that it makes the whole process easier and is less expensive for all the parties involved.
If you want to file for divorce, the first thing that you should do is filing the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with the California court. After you finish the process of filing all the required documents with the court and serve your spouse, he/she has 30 days for a response. In case your spouse doesn’t respond at all, the Judge may make a decision of issuing a default judgment in your favor.
Grounds to end a marriage in California
It is true that married people can end their marriages in the following ways: divorce, annulment and legal separation.
As a matter of fact, in case of a no-fault divorce state, there are two grounds for legal separation. These grounds are irreconcilable differences and incurable insanity.
So, let’s discuss each of them separately.
- Irreconcilable differences
The term ‘’irreconcilable differences’’, which may become the reason for ending the marriage, is the ground for a dissolution of marriages in no-fault states. In this case, one of the parties or both parties may use irreconcilable differences as the reason for divorce. Usually, none of the spouses need to explain exactly what differences are meant. Thus, the court determines that these reasons are substantial for the dissolution of marriage.
- Incurable insanity
Thus, marriage dissolution is possible on the grounds of incurable insanity, if you can provide an appropriate proof. In this case, a testimony of a competent and professional psychiatrist is necessary. You must prove that your spouse was insane during the period of time when you filed the petition and he/she is still in the same condition. That’s to say, this person remains incurably insane and doesn’t have the legal capacity of making decisions. However, in this case, you still have the obligation of supporting your suppose who has appeared in such a situation. The court will determine exactly how you can provide this support.
It is essential to mention that an evidence is needed to support the grounds for divorce.
Grounds for annulment
In case marriages are legally not valid, both spouses have the right to have their marriage annulled. Among the grounds for the annulment of marriage in California are the following: spouses are close blood relatives, one of the spouses is already married, one of the spouses was under 18 at the time of the marriage, etc.
So, when the court determines the annulment is valid, then you can think as if it never happened. Do you have kids from this marriage? Then, paternity is necessary for granting child support, as well as visitation.
You should know about certain residency requirements if you want to file for a divorce in California. These requirements include the following: one of the spouses must have lived in California for minimum six months. Further, one of the spouses must have lived in the county where the divorce is to be filed for minimum three months. However, there is an exception as well. It refers to the same-sex marriages. Even if neither of them is a resident of California, they can file a divorce in California.
In conclusion, becoming aware of the grounds for divorce is essential if you already made a decision of ending your marriage. There is also another vital step that you should take to make the entire divorce process easier. This step is turning to a knowledgeable attorney who can guide you through this complicated situation with high professionalism. A good attorney will evaluate your case in a proper manner based on state statutes and help you reach the divorce settlement that you deserve. Thus with a reliable attorney by your side, the divorce process will be less painful for you.