When couples in Mississippi are going through divorce, some of the pain and upheaval they are experiencing is what they felt during the marriage. But as the proceeding continues, escalating tensions over property division, child support and custody issues can cause more hurt and anger to surface as conflicting viewpoints surface.
While it is possible for the marriage to end quickly, much of this depends on each spouse’s willingness to let old hurts go and agree to be in harmony about the terms of the divorce settlement agreement. For residents of Gulfport and surrounding areas, it can help to discover compassionate solutions to painful issues surrounding divorce that will help you move on with your life.
Is there a no-fault divorce option in Mississippi?
In Mississippi, a no-fault divorce is uncontested, and the grounds for this type of divorce are irreconcilable differences, or an irreparable breakdown of the marriage. Under the residency requirements, one spouse must have lived in the state for at least six months before filing.
If both parties agree to the terms of the settlement agreement, which will include provisions for property division, custody and support, it is a relatively simple procedure. The spouses can either file a joint petition citing irreconcilable differences, or one spouse can serve the other. As long as they have met the residency requirement, there is no waiting period.
An uncontested divorce is quick, inexpensive and often relatively stress-free. It is important to note, however, that if the parties have a disagreement over any of the terms of the divorce, the proceeding will go through the court system as a contested divorce.
What is a contested divorce?
Although the couple can reach a negotiated settlement before a trial with the help of legal counsel, things can get trickier if one blames the other for the divorce. Mississippi is one of several states that allows for divorce on fault grounds, which will be a contested divorce. In such cases, one spouse may cite matrimonial offenses as the cause for the breakdown.
Mississippi has 12 possible grounds for divorce, including:
- Cruelty or violence
- Drug or alcohol addiction
- Pregnancy at the time of marriage
- Criminal conviction
The party filing the complaint must show proof of the accusations, which may include medical or criminal records, witness testimony and sworn affidavits. The other party may file a counterclaim, but then must also present evidence of the claims. Although such divorces are not common, when they do occur, they are contentious, costly and can go on for months if not years.