Divorces in New Jersey may be based on different grounds. While some of those grounds are based on the alleged fault of one or both of the parties, divorces that result from individuals simply growing apart from their spouses are often based on the no-fault option. Before the parties to a marital couple may secure a no-fault divorce in the state, they must satisfy the statutory waiting period set forth under New Jersey law.
The waiting period is 18 month, and during that time, the parties to the marriage must be separated. They must be living separate lives and no longer affiliating themselves with each other as a married couple. If after the 18 month waiting period the parties have not re-affiliated and still wish to divorce they may do so in the courts of the state.
During the period of separation the parties to the couple may begin to work out matters that will be relevant to their divorce. If they share kids, they may put into place a child custody and support plan that will work once their marriage is officially terminated. They may also begin to negotiate the disposition of items of property that they will have to divide once they are no longer married.
It may seem like a long time to wait 18 months to end a marriage, but the separation period before a no-fault divorce is a good time for individuals to finalize their expectations for what their lives will be like once they are out of their marriages. This post does not provide any legal advice and readers can consult with their family law attorneys about the additional requirements for filing for divorce in New Jersey.