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Elements of Spousal Abandonment

Several aspects might cause you to seek a separation from the one person you vowed to spend the rest of your life with. While some like domestic violence are obvious, others will be challenging for you to define correctly. The most common of these is abandonment. In simple terms, you will consider yourself abandoned if your spouse does not show up at home or gives you the cold shoulder for one reason or another. This nonetheless will not suffice in the courts.

As a London-based divorce lawyer will advise you, proving your spouse has abandoned you, and you no longer have a viable marriage is not easy. The courts will consider several aspects in your case to award you a divorce based on abandonment if you file your papers in a fault-based state. The following are nonetheless some of the elements that will boost your case if you are filing for divorce with abandonment as your basis.

The Defendant Has Been Absent for at Least a Year

If your spouse has not been absent for at least a year, the courts might not consider this abandonment. While this might sound pretty simple, the spouse should have been absent continuously. Since most people know this, they might come back for short periods within the time you want to file for abandonment just to break the continuity. Though most states will require proof that the spouse has not been home for a year, others extend this timeframe to not less than two and a half years.

The Defendant’s Intent to Abandon

For the courts to uphold abandonment as the reason for your divorce, the deserting spouse should have left with a clear intention of getting out of the marriage. Even so, it is challenging to know anyone’s intent. If they are, however, having an intimate relationship with someone else at the time of your divorce filing, you can use this as proof that the spouse intended to abandon the marriage.

You Did Not Agree to the Separation

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Arguments and time apart are common in marriage. At times, your spouse can opt to leave the house so that you have time to think things through. If this is what happened, you cannot turn around and claim abandonment yet you and your spouse reached an agreement to separate for some time.

You Played No Part in Driving the Defendant Away

There are times when you can be the cause your spouse ups and leaves. This is common in cases of physical, sexual, and emotional domestic abuse. If you played a part in driving your spouse away, you could not use abandonment as the grounds for your divorce application irrespective of the length of time that has passed.

No marriage is perfect, but there are instances when divorce becomes your best choice. A defendant will try as hard as they can to disprove abandonment as the cause of your divorce even if the above elements exist. This is because abandonment will tip the scales in a plaintiff’s favor when determining child custody, alimony, and the division of marital property. Even so, with a seasoned lawyer, you are guaranteed of a favorable court ruling.

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