If you and your spouse are planning to divorce, you probably are aware of how easy it is to blame each other for things that have gone wrong in your marriage. You may say your spouse is at fault, while they may say you are at fault for the divorce.
The good news is that as far as the divorce process in California goes, you do not need to identify what specifically led to the divorce or who is to blame.
At-fault v. no-fault divorce states
Traditionally, in an at-fault divorce state, you can cite adultery, cruelty, domestic abuse, and other fault-based grounds when filing for a divorce.
A number of states, including California, have no-fault divorce. In a no-fault divorce state, you can cite irreconcilable differences as your reason for filing for divorce. This essentially implies that you can no longer get along with your spouse for whatever reason.
Additionally, in no-fault divorce states, you are permitted to proceed with the divorce even if your spouse does not want to get one.
Do fault-based grounds matter at all?
While you cannot list any of the fault-based grounds as the reason for your divorce, these faults can impact the process in other ways. For example, if your spouse was found guilty of domestic violence, the court may prevent them from having custody of your children or require them to pay you additional spousal support.
If you are not sure whether to address certain faults in your divorce proceedings, it may be best to talk to an attorney specializing in family law.