What are the legal grounds for obtaining a divorce?

A divorce is a lawsuit between spouses that legally ends a marriage.The spouse the files for divorce is the plaintiff and the other spouse becomes the defendant. There are two types of divorce–fault divorce and no-fault divorce. In a fault divorce the grounds for divorce may include adultery, abuse,insanity, imprisonment and desertion. In no-fault states, such as Oregon and Washington, spouses do not have to provide a specific reason in order to file for divorce.

As a no-fault divorce jurisdiction, Oregon law does not require that a spouse has to have done anything wrong to file for divorce. At least one spouse must show that the spouses have irreconcilable differences. This means that the spouses are not able to get along and fix their problems. Under the state law, the differences must cause the irremediable breakdown of the marriage. Although there is not an exact list of issue and situation that constitute irreconcilable difference or irremediable breakdown, the emphasis is on the inability of the married couple to reach a resolution that repairs or continues the marriage.

Washington divorce laws also follow the no-fault divorce system, which requires that at least one spouse show that the marriage is irretrievably broken. The other spouse may agree that the marriage is over due to irreconcilable differences. However, the spouse may choose to contest the no-fault reason. If the spouse contests, the court must look at all of the factor and determine that the breakdown of the marriage is permanent. If the court finds that the marriage is irreparable, it may continue with the divorce proceedings and finalize the divorce.

To schedule a consultation with one of our divorce attorneys in Oregon or SW Washington, call us now at 503.222.9116 or write us.

Andrew Newsom

Andrew Newsom

Andy is a partner at Gearing Rackner & McGrath. He has practiced family law exclusively since 2010 and is licensed to practice in Oregon. Andrew has high-level experience in all areas of family law. Although he is stimulated by trial advocacy, his first priority is to provide his clients with creative and efficient solutions without unneeded expense.

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