Tennessee Divorce After Desertion

By Beverly Bird

Tennessee recognizes a total of 13 different fault grounds for divorce, some of them quite creative. The state also allows spouses to file for divorce on two no-fault grounds. With so many options, it may not be necessary to wait out a statutory time period so you can file on grounds of desertion, unless that time has already passed when you decide to initiate divorce proceedings. Before you file, consult an attorney to choose the alternative that best suits your personal situation.

Waiting Periods

Three of Tennessee's fault grounds relate to desertion. One is “willful desertion,” which means your spouse left you with the intention of not returning. He must remain gone for a year before you can file on grounds of willful desertion. If you moved to Tennessee from another state, and if your spouse refused to move with you and remained behind, this is also grounds for divorce. However, you must wait two years to file. Neither waiting period is really necessary because Tennessee courts will also grant a divorce for abandonment if your spouse leaves you, or if he bans you from the marital home and forces you to move elsewhere. Under these circumstances, no waiting period is required. As long as you lived in the state at the time your spouse deserted you or forced you out, you can file for divorce immediately.

Support

Tennessee courts will order temporary maintenance or alimony after you file for divorce if your spouse left you and is refusing to help you pay bills. This temporary support stays in effect until the time of your final decree. If you choose one of the first two desertion grounds, you’d have to make ends meet on your own while you waited out the statutory time period. However, if you file on grounds of abandonment, you can simultaneously submit a motion for temporary support -- and for child support, if you have children -- at the time you file your complaint.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More

Effect on Divorce

Filing for divorce on fault grounds, such as abandonment or desertion, can be financially advantageous in Tennessee. Although the courts will not consider fault when distributing marital property, the law permits judges to include it as a factor when making decisions about permanent alimony or spousal maintenance after your divorce is final.

Other Options

If you’re not concerned with casting blame when you file for divorce, Tennessee also allows you to file on no-fault grounds of irreconcilable differences. If your spouse has deserted you, he probably wants to end the marriage as much as you do. If he's willing to negotiate a marital settlement agreement, you can submit the agreement to the court and be divorced in a relatively short period of time. Your divorce won't involve a trial or undue court involvement. With a settlement agreement, Tennessee will grant your divorce two months after you file if you don’t have children, and after three months if you do have children.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More
Abandonment Divorce Laws in Texas
 

References

Related articles

Arkansas Laws for Separation

Marital separation can be particularly complicated in Arkansas because the state recognizes two types of marriages and three kinds of legal separation. Sorting through all the laws and rules pertaining to each can be daunting, but the method of separation you choose comes down to a few basics: your personal preferences, your ability to negotiate and how you got married.

What's Required to Get Divorced?

To get divorced, you need a reason that’s acceptable to the court. You need a court that can legally take jurisdiction over your matter and make decisions regarding it; you accomplish this by living in the state where you file for a prescribed period of time. You must also address and resolve all issues of your marriage, including custody and parenting time with your children, before a court will allow you and your spouse to legally part ways.

Ohio Divorce and Abandonment Laws

Ohio law allows you to end your marriage by either divorce or dissolution. Dissolution generally involves an amicable parting of ways; a spouse files for dissolution on no-fault grounds, and the couple reaches a settlement on their own. Divorce requires a fault ground and court involvement to sort out issues such as property division, support and custody. If your spouse has abandoned you, this is a fault ground in Ohio.

Get Divorced Online

Related articles

Can You Get Divorced in Georgia if You Were Married in South Carolina?

Where you get a divorce doesn't depend on where you got married. It depends on where you live at the time you file. The ...

Divorce & Legal Separation Laws in Pennsylvania

Technically, Pennsylvania’s statutes contain no mention of "legal separation." This is a bit misleading, however, ...

The Difficulty of Claiming Abandonment as Divorce Grounds in Alabama

In any state that recognizes abandonment as a divorce ground, the biggest impediment to using it is that your spouse ...

What Is the Meaning of Absolute Divorce in Maryland?

The laws in most states allow you to legally leave your spouse in one of two ways, either completely or partially. In ...

Browse by category
Ready to Begin? GET STARTED