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Rhode Island Divorce Law FAQS How Long Until It’s Over? Residency Requirements & No Fault Divorce
1) How long does it take to get a Rhode Island Divorce?
If all issues regarding divorce, child support, child custody, equitable division of property, alimony, visitation and other matters are resolved between the parties, the earliest possible date for a nominal divorce in Rhode Island (a nominal divorce is an uncontested divorce in which everything is agreed upon) is approximately sixty-five to seventy days after the plaintiff files a divorce petition. If the case is listed as uncontested, an automatic court date, the “nominative divorce hearing”, will be scheduled by the clerk approximately sixty-five to seventy days after filing.
In the event that either party does not wish to proceed on this nominal seventy day divorce hearing date or if all issues are not resolved between the parties, the matter will not proceed. not moving forward on the nominal date and will be set for additional conferences and potentially the discovery process. The case may eventually go to trial. Contested divorces usually resolve in 6-10 months, but can take up to a year.
A divorce cannot become final until at least ninety days after the parties attend the nominal hearing. In other words, the final decree of divorce in Rhode Island cannot enter until at least 90 days after the nominal divorce hearing. In the event that the parties do not go to court and resolve the matter by the nominal court date, the divorce could take up to a year or potentially longer. It is extremely rare for a divorce to take longer than a year.
2) What does a “no-fault” divorce mean in Rhode Island?
In some states, it is necessary to prove fault grounds in order to obtain a divorce. In Rhode Island, it is not necessary to prove a cause of fault to obtain an absolute divorce. All you have to do is prove irreconcilable differences to get a divorce. Irreconcilable differences can be anything from lack of communication, different goals and aspirations, affairs, domestic violence, arguments, falling in love, or really anything. In other words, if either party wishes to end the marriage, that party can obtain a divorce in Rhode Island as long as the other jurisdictional requirements of Rhode Island are met.
“No-fault divorce” does not mean that the fault is not significant! The fault can be extremely large in Rhode Island. If one party can prove that the other party is responsible for the breakdown of the marriage, they can claim a disproportionate share of marital assets. Fault can also be a factor in determining whether or not a party is entitled to support. , abusive behavior, gambling, emotional abuse, sexual abuse, financial mismanagement, criminal activity, abandonment, etc.
3) What is the residency requirement to obtain a Rhode Island Divorce?
To file for divorce in Rhode Island, you must have been domiciled and resident in Rhode Island for one year prior to filing your divorce petition. If you were not domiciled and resident in Rhode Island for one year prior to filing your divorce petition, you may file based on your husband/wife’s residency in Rhode Island for one year prior to filing. It doesn’t matter if you change your residence or move out of town the next day as long as you were a resident on the date you filed for divorce and for one year prior!
There are exceptions for those serving in the military who maintain a residency in Rhode Island. Even if you move the day after filing, you still meet the Rhode Island residency requirements. If you are not qualified to file for divorce in Rhode Island, you should seek an attorney in other states that you may qualify to file for divorce. If you live in Rhode Island but do not meet the residency requirements to file for divorce, there are other types of actions such as filing for separate maintenance without filing for divorce that you may be entitled to. able to deposit, which would allow you to face problems. regarding property rights and child custody and child support issues.
3a) What are the residency requirements at nominal divorce hearings in order to obtain a Rhode Island divorce.
-It is sufficient that both parties appear on the nominal hearing date and testify that at least one of the parties was domiciled and resident in Rhode Island for one year prior to the filing of the divorce complaint. The family court will generally waive the requirement for an additional witness if both husband and wife attend the nominal court date and testify that at least one party had the required residency as noted above.
-If only one party is attending the nominal court date, you need one of the following to obtain a divorce in Rhode Island (a) two additional witnesses in court to testify to the one year residence of the plaintiff or defendant (b) a witness in court to testify to the plaintiff’s one-year residence and an affidavit from another witness attesting to the person’s residence. (This affidavit form can be easily obtained through the clerk of the Rhode Island Family Court.)
If you do not meet these requirements to prove your Rhode Island residency, your divorce petition may be denied or you may be granted additional time to obtain the necessary witnesses or affidavit.
4) In Rhode Island family law, does it make a difference who files for divorce first?
It doesn’t matter which spouse files for divorce when the family court determines fair division of property, child support, child custody, visitation, child custody, alimony, etc. However, in the event that a no contact order, restraining order or emergency motion is needed or filed, which party files first can be extremely important! This is especially true if there is an emergency motion regarding child custody and/or child access involving a child.
Rhode Island Lawyers Legal Notice under RI Professional Liability Rules:
The Rhode Island Supreme Court licenses all attorneys in the general practice of law, but does not license or certify any attorney as an expert or specialist in any area of practice.
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