A spouse typically files a petition for an at-fault divorce because they want justice, a bigger portion of the marital estate, more generous alimony payments, or more favorable child custody arrangements. Therefore, in an at-fault divorce, defense is crucial because it can prevent the innocent spouse from receiving a larger share of the marital estate. Read on to learn how to do so.
The main objections to an at-fault petition for divorce are:
The connivance defense is typically used when the petitioner’s spouse claims adultery or infidelity. The defending spouse may claim that the petitioner spouse lured or established the right circumstances for him or her to engage in marital misconduct, primarily infidelity, using overt or covert ways. According to court rulings, a spouse who engaged in behavior that enabled wrongdoing, such as adultery, may not have the right to claim that the other spouse is being disloyal. According to the courts, assisting constitutes “corrupt consent.” Feigning ignorance, winking, denying knowledge, or tacitly supporting the behavior by providing passive consent are all examples of complicity.
A common defense against accusations of infidelity is condonation or forgiveness.
The accused spouse may contend that the petitioner spouse knew about his or her marital infraction but opted to extend forgiveness and permit the marriage to go normally despite this.
This is a provocation when one spouse incites the other to engage in marital misconduct. Only when the other spouse is accused of engaging in marital misconduct precipitated by some form of provocation on the part of the at-fault spouse may that spouse raise the defense of provocation.
For instance, a partner experiencing verbal or physical abuse from the other spouse vacates the home. The abusive spouse applies for an at-fault divorce and makes accusations of abandonment. Therefore, the partner who left the house can defend their behavior by demonstrating that they were sufficiently provoked.
Neither partner may be entitled to remedy if the crimes or wrongdoings of both partners are sufficient grounds for an at-fault divorce. Because proving or disproving claims and countercharges can involve time, money, and emotions without a guarantee of a favorable decision, skilled family law attorneys will probably suggest their clients against applying for recrimination as a defense.
Couples who do not want to wait for a divorce can work together to create a scheme where one spouse accuses the other of marital malfeasance or misconduct to get a divorce decision. The other partner does not object to the first petition, but before the divorce is finalized, he or she might have a change of heart and reveal the truth by raising the defense of cooperation.