A divorce can be granted based on “irreconcilable differences” or upon grounds.
A divorce upon Irreconcilable Differences is a no-fault divorce, which does not require any proof of grounds. If the parties agree to all terms of the divorce, including division of marital property/marital debts and parenting time and child support if there are children, a lawyer will prepare and the parties may sign a Marital Dissolution Agreement (MDA) and Permanent Parenting Plan (PPP), and submit the documents to the Judge for approval. The Judge will approve the documents if she finds that the terms of the documents are fair and equitable
If the parties are unable to reach an agreement on all issues between themselves, then the only option is a fault-based divorce, which requires that a spouse allege and prove one of the following grounds:
The most commonly used ground for divorce is inappropriate marital conduct, which means that one spouse has done something that the other spouse deems inappropriate. The literal reading of this ground seems to imply that something atrocious occurred during the marriage; however, a simple, every day actions/inactions are sufficient to prove inappropriate marital conduct. Cases where inappropriate marital conduct has been proven include the following: “flipping the bird,” calling the other spouse names or using profanity, not providing for the spouse, abnormal sexual requests, and, generally, being a pain in the #^$. Lesser conduct which occurs over a longer period of time may rise to the level of inappropriate marital conduct, while single acts that are shocking and dangerous may, in and of themselves, be inappropriate marital conduct.
Make sure that you tell your lawyer ALL grounds for divorce you may have; if you do not put a ground in your Divorce Complaint, the Judge will not hear any proof about it! Turner Law Offices, P.C. has over 19 years of experience helping our client’s with alimony issues. The case law in Tennessee is extremely complicated and fact specific. There are literally thousands of cases in Tennessee dealing with alimony; only our experienced attorneys can help you to competently migrate through the alimony maze.