Divorce Guide

Divorce Guide

Getting a Divorce in PA

Divorce is a court process which declares the breakdown of marriage. The documents of the proceedings help the couple to know the divorce process and laws involved. The laws of divorce vary according to the state. For getting a divorce in PA, there are some requirements that should be met for the court to grant divorce.


  • Either party should be a resident for minimum of six months before filing divorce.
  • The divorce may be filed in a county where the defendant resides. If the defendant resides outside the county, then divorce proceeding would take place in the county where the plaintiff resides.
  • The divorce could be filed prior to six months after final separation, if the defendant agrees.
  • The divorce could be filed after six months of separation in the county where either spouse resides.

Grounds for Filing a No-Fault Divorce in PA

In PA, divorce on no-fault basis can be filed on the following 2 conditions:

  • Irretrievable breakdown of marriage and both the spouses are living separately and apart without any contact for two or more years.
  • Irretrievable breakdown of marriage and both spouses have filed affidavits that they consent to divorce.

Grounds for Fault Divorce

  • Committed adultery
  • Cruel treatment
  • Either of spouses has been sentenced to imprisonment for two or more years

Issues Described in PA Divorce Proceedings

  • Child custody and Child support
  • Property division
  • Alimony

Property Division

Pennsylvania is an equity distribution state. The property is equitably divided. Equitably doesn’t necessarily mean equally, but fairly. While dividing the property, court considers many factors such as length of marriage, sources of income of both the spouses, age of both the spouses, etc.

Child Custody

While getting a divorce in PA, the couple needs to sort out this issue which is given utmost importance by the court. The court sees to it that the needs of the child such as education and health are not affected along with all the other basic needs.

Child Support

The guidelines for PA child support are based on the income of both the parents for calculating child support. This is based on the ability of both spouses to support the child.


Alimony is divided according to the income, whether it is a permanent or temporary income. The permanent income can be a retirement plan. The division of assets is done according to the living standards of each spouse.

Words to be used in Court Documents for Pennsylvania

  • Use these exact words, all in capital words: COURT OF COMMON PLEAS, COUNTY, and PENNSYLVANIA
  • Use these stated exact words, all in capital letters: COMPLAINT FOR DIVORCE
  • Use the word plaintiff. Write P in capitals
  • Use the word defendant. Write D in capitals
  • Use these exact words: DECREE OF DIVORCE. Be sure to use capital letters only when placed as the title of the final document.
  • Use the word county

All the above mentioned facts are very important and are given due consideration while getting a divorce in PA.

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