I’ve Heard We Live In A No-Fault State, What Does This Mean?

By Bari Zell-Weinberger
September 23, 2015

Bari Zell-Weinberger, a family lawyer in Parsippany, answers:

In a “no-fault" divorce, the spouse who files for divorce is not obligated to show evidence of wrongful behavior (adultery, cruelty, etc.) on the part of the other spouse. To obtain a no-fault divorce, in most states, it is enough to declare that the couple cannot get along. In divorce papers, this reason can go by such names as “incompatibility" or, in the case of New Jersey, "irreconcilable differences,” which refers to a breakdown of the marriage that has lasted at least six months and in which there is no reasonable prospect of reconciliation. (Other no-fault states may have similar time requirements for irreconcilable differences.)

One of the major benefits of no-fault divorce is that without specific accusations or laying blame on one spouse, citing irreconcilable differences may help to make the divorce process less contentious. New Jersey has offered no-fault divorce on the grounds of irreconcilable differences since 2007. Today, the majority of New Jersey Divorce Complaints cite irreconcilable differences as the reason the divorce is being sought.

To find out if filing for divorce on the no-fault grounds of irreconcilable differences is right for your situation, it is in your best interest to speak with a New Jersey family law attorney who can offer professional guidance on the advantages and disadvantages of filing no-fault in your matter.


Bari Zell Weinberger is the owner and managing partner of Weinberger Divorce & Family Law Group in New Jersey. She is Certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey as a Matrimonial Law Attorney. To learn more about Bari and her firm, visit www.WLG.com or the firm’s profile.

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September 23, 2015
Categories:  Legal Issues|FAQs

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