The Legal Grounds for Divorce in New Jersey

Do You Need to State Legal Grounds? What Are the Benefits of Filing an At-Fault Divorce? What Grounds Are Acceptable?

The Legal Grounds for Divorce in New JerseyIn New Jersey, as in all states, you can file a so-called “no fault” divorce. That does not mean, though, that you don’t need to state a reason, or “grounds,” for the termination of your marriage. New Jersey has only two requirements to qualify for divorce—a legally accepted reason and compliance with the state’s residency requirement.

What Grounds May Be Stated for a No-Fault Divorce?

Pursuant to New Jersey law, a “no-fault” divorce may be granted for one of two reasons:

  • You and your spouse have not lived together for a minimum of 18 consecutive months, or
  • You have what you consider to be “irreconcilable differences,” another way of saying that you can’t agree on enough things to peacefully live together

What Grounds Are Acceptable in a New Jersey “At-Fault” Divorce?

The allegations that can support a divorce for cause in New Jersey include:

  • Adultery or marital infidelity
  • Extreme mental or physical cruelty—this must have started at least three months before the divorce complaint was filed and must have endangered your safety or health
  • Nonconsensual deviant sexual behavior
  • Desertion or absence from the marital home for at least 12 months
  • Imprisonment for a minimum of 18 months consecutively during the marriage
  • Addiction to drugs or alcohol
  • Institution in a mental asylum or facility for a minimum of two years before filing the divorce complaint

What Are the Benefits of Filing an At-Fault Divorce?

Alleging fault in a divorce proceeding can be risky, because it opens the door for your spouse to make similar allegations against you. However, if you can prove fault, you may be able to persuade the judge to give you a more favorable property settlement or affect the availability and amount of alimony.

Contact the Law Office of David M. Lipshutz

We can help you understand the different options available to you in an adoption proceed, so that you can make the right decision for you and your family. For an appointment, contact our office online or call us at 856-627-1990. We are available to meet with you Monday through Friday, between 9 am and 5 pm.

Speak Your Mind


After much reflection, I have decided to retire from the practice of law, after 43 years, and to close my office, effective 12/31/23.

There are a number of reasons, including substantial health concerns in my family (not me), I am needed elsewhere.

It is also my age. I turn 69 shortly.

It is just time.

I therefore cannot accept any new cases, as I do not want to start a matter I probably cannot finish.

I have spoken with several experienced family law attorneys who I respect, who are willing to accept referrals from me. If you want names, please let me know.

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