01 Oct The No-Fault Divorce 50 Years Later
A divorce can be “forced” by one party, without cause, and against their spouse’s will, but this no-fault divorce is just 50 years young. At the Law Offices of Jeffrey M. Bloom in Hackensack, New Jersey, we see all types of reasons for divorce—including no reason at all. In 1969, Ronald Reagan (who was the governor of California at the time) signed the very first no-fault divorce statute into law. Every other state followed suit, but according to many lawmakers, the statute has negatively changed the meaning of marriage. And might even violate the US Constitution!
The Legality Of No-Fault Divorce
According to the 14th Amendment, no person shall be “deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law.” That’s why the right to call witnesses, have defendants be heard, and cross-examinations are key in legal processes. However, a lot of divorce filings never get a day in court. All it takes is one spouse saying there are irreconcilable differences for the divorce process to get kickstarted.
Being innocent of misconduct or abuse doesn’t slow down or halt this process. Prior to 1969, divorce had to be founded on some form of misconduct like adultery or abandonment. Plaintiffs had to prove some violation of their rights to justify divorce. However, lawmakers who supported the no-fault divorce statute said such requirements increased animosity in marriages and increased litigation costs. It supposedly encouraged lying, especially if both spouses simply wanted out. After all, someone had to take the blame before no-fault divorces were legal.
That’s not how the amendment panned out. In fact, by 1980, the divorce rate had doubled. There were more divorce attorneys than ever. The financial and emotional devastation that often occurs in the fallout from the no-fault legislation has been intense. Even today, when divorce rates are decreasing, divorce is still a lot higher than before the no-fault divorce days.
Call Bloom Law Office Today For Your Divorce Consultation
If you’re considering divorce, the best thing you can do for your overall well-being is to work with a trusted legal professional. We’re 50 years into the no-fault divorce law, and divorce certainly isn’t any easier (even when nobody has to be at fault). Get the protection you deserve and connect with Hackensack, New Jersey’s divorce attorneys at the Law Offices of Jeffrey M. Bloom today.