It's important to know that the grounds listed for a Rhode Island Divorce are substantially greater than those listed on the Rhode Island Bar Association website.
While the Rhode Island Bar Association website introduces you to the concept of irreconcilable differences and tells you to speak with your RI Family Lawyer about other grounds, It is too easy to shift the burden to RI Family Lawyers and leave readers believing that Rhode Island is merely a "no fault" state with a few additional grounds that you might discuss with your RI Family Lawyer if they come up.
Specifically, the Rhode Island General Laws 15-5-2 provides several other important grounds for divorce in the State of Rhode Island in addition to "irreconcilable differences" which are as follows:
R.I.G.L. 15-5-2 Additional grounds for divorce.
Divorces from the bond of marriage shall also be decreed for the following causes:
(3) Extreme cruelty;
(4) Willful desertion for five (5) years of either of the parties, or for willful desertion for a shorter period of time in the discretion of the court;
(5) Continued drunkenness;
(6) The habitual, excessive, and intemperate use of opium, morphine, or chloral;
(7) Neglect and refusal, for the period of at least one year next before the filing of the petition, on the part of the husband to provide necessaries for the subsistence of his wife, the husband being of sufficient ability; and
(8) Any other gross misbehavior and wickedness, in either of the parties, repugnant to and in violation of the marriage covenant.
These are all grounds that you should discuss with your RI Family Lawyer regarding your divorce if they are applicable to your case. Keep in mind that your grounds for divorce are likely to affect your divorce proceeding in one or more ways. Your RI Family Lawyer should take the time to explain to you any consequences of using a particular grounds for divorce that you may qualify for based upon your particular family circumstances.
Don't be afraid to ask your RI Family Lawyer about these grounds and what they mean to your case. After all, this is your life! Don't sit on the sidelines and let a divorce happen to you in RI or anywhere else. This is your life! You may have a house! You may have children! You may have assets! You may have a broken heart! You may be in need of healing.
This is YOUR LIFE! This is what you have invested your time and energy in. It's not the time to sit on the sidelines and let any RI Family Lawyer or any RI Family Judge decide what happens to everything in YOUR LIFE!
Retain control! Be an adult! Settle your case reasonably, no matter what the grounds and design a beautiful future for YOUR TOMORROW!
Christopher A. Pearsall, RI Family Lawyer
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