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What Are The Different Types Of Divorce



There are at least four main types of divorce available to struggling couples seeking dissolution to their marriages. Because family law is governed at the state level, each jurisdiction may have variances and state-specific nuances to this grouping. Therefore, it is prudent to seek the advice of legal counsel to ascertain the available options in a given locality and which type may best fit a particular situation, while reducing the financial and emotional toil as much as possible.

Main Types of Divorce The following list represents the main types of divorce:

  • Absolute divorce - This type of divorce represents a legal conclusion to the marriage relationship. This divorce brings an end to every legal bond between the parties in their time as a couple. Each state may have slightly different grounds available for this type.
  • Limited divorce - This type of divorce is akin to separation. Limited divorces may be appropriate for a couple seeking to conclude their marriage but who may lack absolute divorce grounds for same. This type of divorce is also an option for couples who require more time to take care of financial matters involved with the divorce and who require the assistance of a third party to resolve their conflicts. Under a limited divorce, couples must live separate and apart without cohabitation or any sexual relationship with third parties. A limited divorce provides spouses with time to resolve alimony, child support, child custody, property division, health insurance and other financial matters prior to the finalization of their separation.
  • Uncontested divorce - This type of divorce occurs when a couple comes to an agreement about the division of their property, finances, children and other conflicts. This is the most simple of all types and, accordingly, tends to be the cheapest and quickest form. One of the drawbacks of an uncontested divorce is that under this fast-track process, spouses may end up unknowingly waiving rights, like support from pensions, retirement accounts, real estate assets, business interests or other income sources that might not be as readily apparent in their initial financial review. For this reason, it is prudent to consult legal counsel even in seemingly simple divorces.
  • No-fault divorce - This type of divorce does not require either partner to assign blame or misconduct to the other. Instead, the parties cite irreconcilable differences as the cause for the marriage's failure. This divorce is appropriate for spouses seeking an amicable option, without lengthy and expensive proceedings over property distribution and/or child custody.
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