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In order to be divorced in West Virginia, the couple must first establish the ground, or reasons, for the divorce. In order to decide on a ground, the couple must prove that ground. A spouse in the marriage only needs to prove one ground in order to have the divorce granted.
The most common ground is “Irreconcilable Differences” which is the only no fault option. In order to choose this ground, both spouses must agree. Both sides must separately sign in writing claiming irreconcilable differences, and if they do, nothing else needs to be proven.
If the couple cannot to decide irreconcilable differences, they must prove an at fault ground. These are sometimes difficult to prove and sometimes do not always work out. It is safer to list more than one ground when filing in the event one cannot be proven. At fault grounds sometimes alter the judge’s decision on alimony amounts and if one parent should have limited custody with children. At fault grounds will not work, even if proven, if the couple has condoned the situation. These grounds can include a one-year voluntary separation, adultery, habitual drunkenness or drug addiction, desertion, abuse of a child or stepchild, inhuman treatment, conviction, and permanent insanity.
In any situation, divorce is a hard process to go through for a family. If you or a loved one is considering a divorce, contact one of our West Virginia divorce attorneys for any questions you may have or for more information on the grounds of divorce.