Do You Have Grounds to File for a Fault Divorce?
Maryland has stricter divorce laws than many other states. In many cases, it’s necessary to prove that a person has fault-based grounds for an absolute divorce if a 12-month legal separation is not desirable. Speak with a divorce lawyer in Glen Burnie or Severn about your particular situation to find out if you may be able to prove a fault basis for divorce.
Infidelity is a common reason for divorce, but many spouses hesitate to seek a fault-based divorce because they believe that adultery is difficult to prove. It can sometimes be challenging to prove adultery, but it is certainly not impossible. All your divorce lawyer needs to prove is that your spouse had the disposition and the opportunity to engage in intercourse outside of marriage; it isn’t necessary to provide definitive documentation of sexual intercourse. For example, a private investigator may take photos of public displays of affection between your spouse and another person. This proves the disposition to commit adultery. Testimony may be admitted to show that your spouse entered the other person’s dwelling and did not leave until the following morning. This proves the opportunity for adultery.
Under Maryland divorce law, desertion may be “actual” or “constructive.” Actual desertion occurs when a spouse leaves the marital home without a justifiable reason. Constructive desertion involves being justified in leaving the marital home, in which case, the spouse who leaves is deserted.
Cruelty of treatment and vicious conduct often involves acts of physical violence committed against a spouse or the minor child. Cruelty may be proven with medical records, police reports, and photographs of injuries. However, cruelty of treatment can also involve emotional or verbal abuse. Cruelty can refer to a pattern of abusive language that is severe enough to threaten the well-being of the other spouse.
A fault-based divorce based on a criminal conviction is among the easiest to prove. All that’s needed is the proper paperwork to prove that your spouse was convicted of a crime and has received either an indeterminate sentence or a sentence of more than three years. At the time of filing for divorce, the spouse must have been incarcerated for 12 months.