Maryland is still one of the few states which grant divorces on fault grounds and no-fault grounds. Below are answers to frequently asked questions prior to divorce in Maryland.
How long is the waiting period before my divorce is finalised in Maryland?
In order to retain a final legal divorce, in other words, an “absolute divorce” the spouses must meet one of the grounds for divorce. If the spouses are filing for a no-fault divorce then they must be living apart for up to one year without interruption before their divorce may be finalised. However, rather than waiting a year before filing for divorce the spouses can opt to file for a limited divorce. This serves as providing temporary support and getting in line for an absolute divorce.
What is the difference between fault grounds and no-fault grounds and which one do I apply to?
Filing a no-fault divorce is less complicated and there is no particular party to blame for the divorce. However, the waiting period to get it finalized is one year of living apart. A fault divorce is when one party can be blamed for the ending of the marriage. Acceptable fault grounds in Maryland include adultery, including homosexual acts whereby the evidence must be clear and convincing, cruelty which requires physical or extreme emotional harm, abandonment in which one party leaves the marital residence without the other spouse’s consent or the conviction or imprisonment of one spouse. Providing on a fault ground rather than a no-fault ground is much more complicated and time-consuming. However, it may be worth the effort as the proof of fault may have an effect on the division of marital property and alimony.
What evidence is required by the state to prove adultery?
Proving adultery can be done either directly or indirectly. In most cases it is hard for a spouse to have direct proof. A private investigator certified by the state of Maryland can be hired who may assist in finding evidence of the affair. Direct evidence indicating the spouse is guilty includes public displays of affection and an exchange of emails or texts showing romantic involvement. Another option is using indirect proof. This needs to show that the guilty spouse had the chance to commit adultery. Evidence to prove this includes hotel or travel records, like booking confirmations and credit card receipts.
At what point of my significant others departure is considered as desertion?
As a fault ground of divorce, desertion can be filed in the event that one spouse has left the marital residence without the other spouse’s consent for at least 12 months without interruption. Or if the desertion is deliberate and final and there is no chance the spouse will return.
Can I date while separated in Maryland?
No, as in the state of Maryland it is still considered as adultery if a person is dating and having sexual intercourse with another person while his or her divorce has not been finalised yet. Even though the spouses are living apart and may have no intention of remaining together it is recommended dating other people is put off until the spouses have completed one year of separation.
If you need a Maryland Divorce Lawyer to help you with your divorce case in Maryland, call us at 888-437-7747. Our Maryland divorce attorneys can help you.