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The 13 grounds for a Georgia divorce

| Nov 24, 2020 | Divorce |

Anyone seeking out a divorce needs to know the grounds for a total divorce before suing for one. Georgia statutes detail 13 separate grounds. 

Twelve fall under a category known as fault grounds and may arise at the time of marriage or after. 

Fault grounds at time of marriage

Many of these grounds may imply a lack of knowledge when a couple marries. When this information comes to light, a divorce may be the answer: 

  • The spouses are too closely related by blood 
  • A spouse is impotent 
  • A spouse is pregnant by another man other than the husband without his knowledge 
  • A spouse suffers a mental incapacity 

Another situation that acts as grounds for divorce at the time of marriage is if any menace, duress or fraud forces a marriage. 

Fault grounds after marriage

Criminal convictions of “moral turpitude,” meaning crimes such as murder, rape or embezzlement that sentence a spouse to two or more years of prison time, act as grounds for a divorce. Other actions such as adultery, desertion and cruel treatment count as well. Should a spouse willfully desert the other for one year or be habitually drunk or addicted to drugs, he or she could file for a divorce. 

One option for divorce does not revolve around a spouse’s actions, but rather mental illness. These particular grounds for divorce require several steps, as a court must certify with the help and examination of many experts. 

The thirteenth of the grounds the statute lists is a no-fault divorce in which case one spouse claims the marriage to be irretrievably broken. Merriam-Webster’s dictionary explains this involves the spouses developing incompatibility with each other during the marriage.