When a couple wants to go their separate ways, they opt for a divorce. At this point, they are most likely not willing to be around each other.
Opting for divorce means that both parties are interested in terminating their union. A divorce involves reshuffling or annulling the legal duties binding in the marital union.
While they are figuring out the best way to go about their divorce, they are usually presented with two options: a fault vs no-fault divorce.
If you are at a crossroads and don’t know which one to opt for, this piece promises to provide ample information on the most appropriate one for you and your soon-to-be ex-partner.
What does a fault divorce mean?
A fault divorce is a type of divorce where either one partner or both of them requests an annulment of the union because of one or more faults. This type of divorce is possible if any of the fault grounds for divorce is available.
For questions like “what is a no-fault divorce?” It is a type of divorce where neither person in the couple is blamed for the marriage or union’s failure.
Depending on the state or country, when a no-fault divorce is in motion, the couples cannot live together for some time. Therefore, according to their no-fault divorce laws, they must be apart before they can file for a no-fault divorce.
Unlike fault divorce, which is not conventional anymore, many countries offer couples the chance of opting for no-fault divorce.
This research study by Peter N. Swsher combines fault vs no-fault divorce peculiarities into an article titled: Reassessing fault factors in no-fault divorce. It is a must-read for anyone who is looking to select between either divorce types.
What are the differences between a fault and a no-fault divorce?
A fault vs no-fault divorce has their peculiarities. It is essential to know what each entails to get the best out of your divorce annulment.
If you are stuck between fault vs no-fault divorce, here are some differences to help you make the right choice.
The speed of the divorce process completion is one of the distinguishing factors between fault vs no-fault divorce. If you and your partner cannot finally separate from each other, and you are looking to make things faster, a no-fault divorce is your best bet.
This is because none of the partners are being blamed during the no-fault divorce process. So, there will be less back and forth, which makes the divorce process faster.
Generally, lawyers prefer the no-fault divorce because extended divorce cases can be bureaucratic and riddled with many problems.
On the other hand, a fault divorce takes longer because one party is blamed for being the cause of the annulment. Hence, it can be more frustrating and move at a slow pace.
When children are involved, a no-fault divorce is the best bet to prevent them from being traumatized. Parents want their children’s best interests irrespective of their irreconcilable differences, so having decent communication allows them to dissolve the marriage without affecting the children emotionally.
Asides from having children, a no-fault divorce makes the divorce process more efficient. If problems arise, they will quickly get sorted.
In comparison, it is hard to achieve smooth communication in a fault divorce because there are two warring parties. With children in the picture, communication is strained in a fault divorce; the children can get caught in the middle and unknowingly take sides.
Irrespective of the divorce type, there are some incurred costs during the union annulment process, and this is one of the differences between fault vs no-fault divorce.
There’s barely anyone who decides to opt for a divorce that would not think about the costs involved. If you are looking to spend less in your divorce process, consider the no-fault divorce.
In a no-fault divorce, you will not incur much expenses when making payments like attorney fees. More so, other costs will be reduced because this divorce type is smooth and less complicated.
The case is different from the fault divorce type. Since it is a more challenging, long, and strenuous process, both parties incur more expenses. So, it is essential to be financially buoyant if you are considering the fault divorce option.
No matter how smooth a fault vs no-fault divorce process can be, both parties would have their fair share of emotions during and after the process. When both parties blame each other for the union’s failure, it can become more emotionally draining.
At this point, decisions from both parties would be made based on emotions instead of careful and thorough deliberations. A fault divorce prevents both parties from realizing that they would reap the most when exploring the reflective dialogue path instead of deciding when they are consumed in their emotions.
On the other hand, a no-fault divorce reduces the tendency of the union dissolution to be emotionally swamped. This would make both parties make clear, thought-out decisions that would benefit them and their children if they are present.
Another worthy ground to file for a fault divorce is the ineptitude to consummate the union. If one of the partners is impotent and does not discuss the problem with the other party, it is enough ground to annul the marriage.
One of the common grounds for fault divorce is domestic violence. If one party is used to inflicting injury and pain on the other party, the victim can opt for fault divorce stating domestic violence as a reason.
With domestic violence as a ground, it would be easy for the judge to recognize the risk involved if the victim remains in the marriage. Hence, the judge might have no choice but to annul the marriage.
In some places, spouses are allowed to divorce if they don’t want to live with each other. Irreconcilable differences are sometimes called “incompatible temperament” or irreconcilable differences.
Since it is a ground for no-fault divorce, no blame is apportioned to both parties.
With this ground, both parties might have to get an affidavit and sign an oath that the marriage cannot be mended. They can also write that the marriage is beyond repair, and they must go their separate ways.
Elizabeth Ann Massey’s research study titled: No-fault divorce legislation and its impact on state divorce rates is an informative read. It explores the rise and fall in divorce rates in some states in the U.S. based on the no-fault divorce legislation.
In a fault vs no-fault divorce, the outcome is always the same; both parties must go separate ways. Hence, it is important to opt for the divorce option that meets your needs and is not something you will regret eventually.
With the information mentioned in this article, you can consider each option by understanding the difference between fault and no fault divorce before taking the next step.
To know more about fault vs no fault divorce, check out Riane Eisler’s book titled: Dissolution: This book explores the basic societal changes surrounding divorce that were previously not accepted, but are now mainstream.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Rachael Pace is a noted relationship writer associated with Marriage.com. She provides inspiration, support, and empowerment in the form of motivational articles and essays. Rachael enjoys studying the evolution of loving partnerships and is passionate about writing on them. She believes that everyone should make room for love in their lives and encourages couples to work on overcoming their challenges together.