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What Are Grounds for Divorce in Kentucky?

Grounds for Divorce in Kentucky - Ron Aslam Law

Sometimes “happily ever after” doesn’t last quite as long as we had hoped. If you live in Kentucky and believe that it’s time to separate from your spouse, there are a few things that you need to know. The way that divorces are handled in the U.S. varies by state.  If you want a divorce in Kentucky, it’s important that you’re armed with the facts.

What Are Grounds For Divorce in Kentucky?

Kentucky is considered a “no-fault” state.  This means that you can’t ask for divorce because your spouse did something wrong.  The only grounds necessary for a divorce in Kentucky are that the marriage is “irretrievably broken.”  What this means is that one or both of you claim that you have no chance of reconciling the marriage.  Neither party needs to show proof of fault in a Kentucky divorce case.

Who Can File for Divorce in Kentucky?

Either party in the marriage can file for a divorce in Kentucky, with one exception.  If the wife is pregnant, the couple must wait until the baby is born to file for divorce.  This is the case even if the husband isn’t the baby’s biological father.

Waiting Period for a Kentucky Divorce

There are several waiting periods that you need to know about if you want a divorce in Kentucky. If you’ve just moved to the state, at least one spouse must be a state resident for at least 180 days before filing for a divorce.   If you already have a legal separation in place, you’re require to be separated for at least one year before filing for divorce.

In a standard Kentucky divorce, you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse must live apart for at least 60 days before a judge will grant a divorce. You can satisfy the requirement for “living apart” even if you are living under the same roof as long as you are not sexually intimate for that period of time.  This waiting period may not apply if there are no children in the marriage.

When There is Marital Misconduct

As is often the case, one or another party in the marriage wants out due to the bad behavior of another. Because Kentucky is a “no fault” state, a divorce won’t be granted due to such things as abandonment, abuse, or adultery.  While the courts don’t have to take a spouse’s misconduct into consideration when they give a ruling that divides property and delivers any award for maintenance, it is possible that this behavior could become a factor in later decisions.

Dividing Property in a Kentucky Divorce

While some might think that it’s fair to divide up assets 50-50 in a divorce, this isn’t how the system in Kentucky operates. Kentucky is an equitable distribution state, which means that the judge will decide what is fair when it comes to property division. The types of property that will be divided include all income and assets accumulated during the marriage.

Awarding Maintenance and Child Support After a Kentucky Divorce

Another thing that the courts can award after a divorce in Kentucky are several types of ongoing payments. Among these are alimony and child support. This is the other circumstance in which spousal misconduct, or wrongdoing, might play a factor in the judge’s decision and award.

When the courts determine such things as child custody, they will always consider what is in the best interest of the child based on all available information. Child support payments are a separate issue as Kentucky requires that both parents financially support children until they reach the age of 18 or graduate from high school.  This is the maximum age that a parent will be required to pay child support, unless the child is disabled.

Contact An Experienced Kentucky Divorce Attorney

While some Kentucky divorce cases are straightforward and settled quickly, others are complex with multiple issues in dispute. The courts can’t give legal advice, so it’s never advisable to attempt a do-it-yourself divorce. If you have questions about Kentucky divorce law or would like to schedule an appointment to discuss your situation, contact the experienced Louisville divorce attorney at Ron Aslam Law Office.  We can be reached at(502) 581-1676.