Grounds for divorce in Idaho

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There are a number of grounds for divorce in Idaho. However, more than 98 percent of marriages in Idaho end due to irreconcilable differences.

In Idaho, there are a number of grounds for divorce in Idaho. However, more than 98 percent of marriages in Idaho end due to irreconcilable differences, also known as a "no-fault divorce."
The majority of divorces in Idaho are no-fault or granted on the grounds of irreconcilable differences between the parties.

What are the grounds for divorce in Idaho?

There are a number of grounds for divorce in Idaho. While there are many reasons to get divorced, most reasons fall into the categories below.

  • Adultery
  • Extreme cruelty
  • Willful desertion
  • Willful neglect
  • Habitual intemperance
  • Conviction of a felony
  • Either spouse becoming permanently insane
  • Separation without cohabitation for five years
  • Irreconcilable differences exists between the parties

Is Idaho a no-fault divorce state?

Idaho is both an at-fault and a no-fault divorce state. The court can find a party at fault during a divorce proceeding. However, the court can also grant a divorce without finding either party at fault. This is the most common course of action in Idaho. People generally think of irreconcilable differences as a “no-fault divorce.”

What does “irreconcilable differences” mean?

Idaho statute defines irreconcilable differences.

Irreconcilable differences are those grounds which are determined by the court to be substantial reasons for not continuing the marriage and which make it appear that the marriage should be dissolved.

Idaho Statute 32-616

Simply put, it means that the bonds of marriage are broken between the parties and cannot be repaired. Generally, this is something parties often agree upon. Sometimes, it’s the only thing parties agree upon during their divorce.

Does fault matter in a divorce?

Fault doesn’t matter in the majority of cases. The court can grant a divorce without finding either party is at fault. As a result, there isn’t a lot of reasons why a judge would want to listen to parties fight with each other over fault. The judge can find irreconcilable differences exist between the parties and grant the divorce without finding fault. However, there are some cases when fault does matter.

When does fault matter in a divorce?

Fault matters the most when one party is seeking spousal support. Spousal support is also known as spousal maintenance or alimony. Spousal support isn’t very common in Idaho. (And is declining across the country.) However, it’s most often appropriate when a party lacks sufficient property to provide for his or her reasonable needs and he or she is unable to support themselves through employment. If these conditions exist, the court must consider several factors. The fault of either party is one of those factors. If all of the other factors suggest ordering spousal support and one party is clearly at fault, then the court is more likely to grant their request.

 

How many divorces in Idaho are no-fault divorces?

Almost all of them. Idaho granted 6,674 divorces in 2017. Courts granted 6,586 of them on the grounds of irreconcilable differences that year. That’s 98.68 percent of all divorces. Furthermore, courts only granted 24 divorces on the grounds of adultery. Extreme cruelty accounted for nine divorces. In addition, fraud accounted for 33. This means that almost 99 percent of all divorces are no-fault divorces in Idaho.

Disclaimer: This information is provided for general advice only. Do not substitute it for actual legal adviceLegal advice varies according to specific facts and circumstances. Therefore, you should never substitute reading free legal advice in a blog for talking to a licensed attorney about your specific situation.

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