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Divorce: What Are the Requirements?

Many times I get asked...what do I need to prove to get a divorce? Many believe that Florida requires fault to be proven before a divorce can be granted. Florida is a no fault state. No fault divorces are those which permit the parties to ask the court for a divorce based only on a finding that the marriage is irretrievably broken. In Florida all that has to be proven is that a marriage exists, one party has been a resident in the state of Florida for six months, and the marriage is irretrievably broken. 

However, fault may be consider under the following circumstances: alimony, division of property, custody (time-sharing) issues. While the traditional fault-based grounds are no longer required to file for divorce, as explained early those factors may become relevant in litigation. Example of faults include:

  • Adultery;
  • Domestic violence;
  • Desertion or abandonment;
  • Substance abuse or alcoholism;
  • Imprisonment

For example, adultery. Adultery is sexual intercourse between a married person and another person (that other person not being the spouse of the married person). Adultery can affect the division of marital property, child custody (time-sharing), and alimony.

Division of Property:

In normal circumstances, Florida courts will divide marital property between the parties in a fair and equitable manner. However, adultery can have a great impact on the division of marital property. In some adulterous relationships, the married spouse spends large amount of money on the paramour (the third wheel), or the married spouse may support financially the paramour to the detriment of the financial stability of the non-cheating spouse. In situations where the adulterous relationship has caused financial injury to the non-cheating spouse, a court can take the adulterous relationship into consideration and award the non-cheating spouse a larger share of the marital property and/or alimony. 

Child Custody (Time-Sharing):

Again, in normal circumstances, the best interest of the child requires that both parents participate and spend time in child's life. However, when the actions of a parent impact the best interest of the child, a court can take the facts in consideration when ordering a parenting time schedule. For example, a parent who has substance abuse problem can threaten the physical safety of the child, a parent at that point may find his or her parenting time reduced or even eliminated (in extreme cases). 

​For more information about how long does a divorce take in Florida, look at my other article titled "How Long Does a Family Law Proceeding Take in Florida?"

If you are interested and need assistance with a family law issue or divorce, contact Lindsay Ruiz Bash, P.A. Contact the firm's office to arrange a free initial consultation. Attorney Bash is also available to meet after hours by appointment only. We proudly serve the whole Tampa Bay area: Hillsborough County, Pasco County, New Tampa, Wesley Chapel, Dade City, Carrollwood, Temple Terrace, Zephyrhills, Brandon, Lutz, South Tampa, Plant City, Riverview, New Port Richey, Land O' Lakes and all the surrounding areas.

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