Every divorce must include at least one ground as the basis for the divorce. The Texas Family Code provides for 7 different grounds for divorce:
4. Conviction of a felony,
6. Living apart, and
7. Confinement in a mental hospital.
These grounds for divorce are divided up into no-fault grounds and at-fault grounds. Insupportability, living apart, and confinement in a mental hospital are considered no-fault grounds. In a no-fault divorce neither spouse is alleged to have caused the breakup of the marriage. The vast majority of all Texas divorces are based on insupportability. A divorce based on insupportability removes any need to involve personal details of either spouse’s conduct during the marriage. This makes the divorce process much easier for those spouses wanting a divorce based on insupportability.
Cruelty, adultery, felony conviction, and abandonment are considered at-fault grounds for divorce. One spouses is alleging the other spouse’s actions are the reason for the break-up of the marriage. Fault grounds can give a spouse a basis on which to request a greater share of the community estate and can help determine the amount and duration of any spousal maintenance payments.
Many times people assume all community property will be divided 50/50. In most divorce cases based on insupportability (no-fault), the community estate is divided equally. However, the court has the ability to divide the estate in any manner it feels is a just and right equitable division. If one spouse has been shown to have committed adultery and is at fault for the break up the marriage, the court may award the other spouse a share that is more than 50%.
It is important to discuss with an attorney the appropriate grounds for divorce in your case. You want to understand the benefits to alleging a no-fault divorce or an at-fault divorce based on your particular circumstances.
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