Divorce Guide

Divorce Guide


North Dakota No Fault Divorce


According to North Dakota no-fault divorce laws, one can obtain divorce in the state of North Dakota only on the basis of one ground, and that is: “irreconcilable differences”. If a spouse files in the court that the marriage has broken down “irretrievably” owing to “irreconcilable differences”, then the divorce would be granted to him/her. The other fault grounds on the basis if which divorce can be granted are: adultery, insanity, willful desertion, wilful neglect etc. One can also file for “legal separation” in the state of North Dakota on the grounds of adultery, irreconcilable differences, cruel and inhuman treatment, drunkenness etc. After being legally separated (bed and board), a couple can file for divorce and would get one if all the papers related to divorce are completed and that the couple have followed all the legal procedures well.

Residential requirements in ND no-fault divorce

According to ND no-fault divorce laws, at least one of the spouses must have resided in the state of North Dakota for a period of 6 months before entering into legal separation action.

When will I get divorce?

No-fault divorce laws in the state of North Dakota specify that one may be granted divorce with in three months of filing the papers. If the divorce is uncontested and the paperwork is complete, then divorce would be granted at the earliest.

Property division in ND no-fault divorce

The matter related to property division is usually settled “outside the courts” by the spouses filing for no-fault divorce. If there are disputes regarding this matter, then property is divided among the spouses “equitably” and there is a fair and just division of all the property of the two spouses. Several factors are considered while deciding how much each spouse should get, such as the age and health of each spouse, employability of the spouse, market value of the property etc. Sometimes judges may invade the property of the other spouse if it is considered necessary to do so.

Child custody in ND no-fault divorce

The matters concerning child custody and child support are also usually settle “outside the courts” to ensure that there is least hassles in these matters. Parents may participate in court-recommended child custody mediation and arrive at a parenting plan and visitation schedule which needs to be resented to the court. Once the judges approve the parenting plan then the divorce would be granted. However, many a times the matter of custody is a “contested one” with one spouse filing a complaint that the presence of the other spouse has detrimental affect on the child. Courts would then look at the “fault” factor of the spouse and determine child custody based on ND child custody guidelines. Judges keep the welfare and security as the top most priority while determining custody.

The choice of the grounds on the basis of which divorce can be granted depends on several factors which are with the spouses. Some people are known to file no-fault divorce even when there is substantial evidence of “wrongdoing” on the part of the other spouse. It is to avoid messy court battles, especially when there are children involved. One may file for “fault” grounds in divorce if one is sure to have an edge over the other spouse on matters of child custody or property division. It is to be noted that “fault” grounds of divorce requires trial which may eat up a lot of time and money. It is wise to take the advice of the attorney in such matters and choose the best options for divorce.


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