No Fault Divorce History

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Divorce is the only process that is implemented to provide legal end to any failing marriage. In earlier times, this legal process was completely based upon filing complaints or stating all faults in front of the court. The very initial step used to be the petition step where either of the two divorcing partners filed a petition against their partner for a particular fault like cruelty or adultery. This led to messy and lengthy legal battles. In order to avoid this conflict, the need of no-fault divorces sprouted up. In a no fault divorce, none of the divorcing partners point out any fault of the other partner. They simply state that incompatibility of temperament or irreconcilable differences are the basis of embarking on the route of divorce.

The mentioning of such grounds is directly taken into account by the state court. At the same time, some basic requirements such as, satisfying the residency criteria of the state is one of the major factors considered before initializing such legal process. As a result, no fault divorce is proven to be a convenient legal process, as it saves a lot of time and additional expenses that are usually involved with general divorce cases. Nowadays, no fault divorce is granted in almost every state in the US. However, this particular form of divorce is only accepted after properly analyzing the of divorce laws or making slight amendments to them.

Origin of No Fault Divorce in the United States

The concept of no fault divorce and related laws is firstly introduced by the state of Oklahoma in 1953. This was the first state in the country to accept this style of divorce. The Oklahoma was the only state that granted the no fault divorces for seventeen years.

On September 04, 1969, the state of California became the second state to offer such type of divorces. The Governor Ronald Reagan of California mainly introduced the no fault laws in this state and further this trend acquired some momentum. This law became effective from January 01, 1970 when the Governor finally signed the final document about implementing the laws.

Latter No Fault Divorce History of the United States

From 1969 to 1977, nine more states in the country followed the trend set by California. During the later part of 1983, it was recorded that all states in the country had no fault divorce laws, with the exception of New York and South Dakota.

In 1985, South Dakota eventually joined the remaining states. Presently, New York is the only state that does not permit the unilateral no fault divorce. The statute in this state is such that if the divorcing partners notarized a separation agreement and resided apart and have undergone a separation period for at least a year, then the Judge has the right to grant the no fault divorce.

From 1970 onwards, the divorce rate in America gradually increased and reached to a maximum of 55 percent during the 1990s. Further, it decreased slightly and remained steady at 50 percent. As per the several government statistics, the data reflected that there are around one million divorce cases occurring every year.

Opposition to No Fault Divorce Before the legal acceptance of this form of divorce process in most of the states in the US, various oppositions are also faced by the concerned people. The Father's Rights Movement has played a role in opposing no fault divorce. Members of this movement are of the opinion that if a child or children is involved in the divorce, then a presumption of custody of any such child or children must be with the Respondent, irrespective of the gender of the Respondent. In this context, it is assumed that the Respondent is the partner who does not desire a divorce. Some people are of the opinion that if the above mentioned amendment is done regarding no fault divorce laws, then it would result in two favorable conditions:

  • The negative effects of divorce on the child or children would decrease
  • The divorce rate itself would get reduced
The issue pertaining to adverse impact on children has been studied comprehensively. The researchers have collected sufficient proof that after no fault divorce laws were introduced, the divorce rate increased. This enhanced divorce rate had a definite effect on children in the form of more mental health problems, economic instability, more crime and higher poverty rates.

The no fault divorce history comprised of all the details highlighting the development of laws and rights associated with no fault divorce.

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