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.