A Guide to Filing for Divorce in Pennsylvania

Filing for divorce can be a complicated process if you aren’t familiar with the laws that govern your state. Couples filing for divorce in Pennsylvania have several different options, each options is dependent on your specific situation and desired outcomes.

Pennsylvanian couples seeking a divorce can file for dissolution of their marriage using any of the means below:

  • Mutual Consent Divorce: Couples in agreement regarding their divorce can file for a mutual consent divorce, which requires both parties to sign an affidavit stating their marriage is broken beyond repair. Legally, a marriage that is broken beyond repair is considered irretrievably broken. The biggest differences between mutual consent divorce and other filings are that spouses have to attest to their consented filing, and they don’t need to live separately before filing. Even with the mandatory 90-day waiting period, a mutual consent divorce is the fastest and easiest divorce for couples who meet the requirements.
  • No-Fault Divorce: A no-fault divorce can be filed after a separation period. Couples have to be separated for at least one year. No-fault divorces don’t require consent from the other party in the marriage.
  • Fault-Divorce: Filing for an at fault divorce may take longer and is more complicated than a no fault or mutual consent divorce. If a spouse files for a fault divorce, they must submit evidence supporting the accusation. A court official in a review separate from the divorce proceedings, will make a determination regarding the legitimacy of the claims of misconduct and report to the judge their findings. If the court agrees with the claims, the divorce will move forward as a fault divorce case. If the court does not agree, then the spouse has the right to appeal or file for divorce on different grounds.

A fault divorce can be filed on one of the following six grounds:

      • Adultery
      • Bigamy
      • Cruel & Barbarous Treatment
      • Desertion
      • Incarceration
      • Indignities
  • Divorce after Institutionalization: If a spouse is committed to an institution for mental illness for a minimum of 18 months with another 18 months of institutionalization pending, their spouse may file for divorce.
  • Divorce After Personal Injury: If a party is convicted of harming their spouse, their consent to a mutual divorce will be recorded. This law protects domestic violence victims from a violent spouse. Abused spouses can now obtain an easier divorce from a spouse after they’ve been convicted of a crime of personal injury towards the injured party.

Cairns Law Group: Home of the $219 Uncontested No Fault Divorce

Filing for divorce in Pennsylvania isn’t complicated if you know where to find the answers to your questions, where to find the documents you need to submit to the court, and you feel confident completing the paperwork and filing them. Many aspects of the divorce process are about paperwork and court filings, and a divorce can get derailed if all the paperwork and filing isn’t done precisely. Every divorce is different, so choosing the filing that works best for your situation is a good starting point. If you still aren’t sure where to start, contact the attorneys from Cairns Law Offices, we specialize in no-fault divorces for only $219. If the idea of a low-cost, amicable divorce appeals to you, contact us today to get started! Call us at (888) 863-9115 to schedule a consultation.

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