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North Dakota Divorce Laws

As with most other family-based legal processes, divorce is regulated by state laws. These laws indicate whether one or both parties are required to reside within the state for a certain period of time, grounds for divorce, rules for legal separation, and other guidelines. All states allow "no-fault" divorce when neither of the two parties is to blame for the end of the marriage. Some, but not all states allow defenses to divorce filings.

This article provides a general overview of divorce laws in the state of North Dakota.

Divorce Laws in North Dakota: At a Glance

North Dakota's divorce laws are fairly similar to those of other states, with a six-month residency requirement and access to "no-fault" divorce. In addition to "irreconcilable differences," one party may sue the other for divorce on grounds of adultery, cruelty, or other grounds. The North Dakota Supreme Court provides all the forms you may need for a self-represented divorce, but parties are usually better off hiring attorneys.

See FindLaw's Divorce section for a variety of helpful articles and resources, including How Marriage Annulments Differ from Divorces and the Grounds for Obtaining a Marriage Annulment and What Divorce Can and Cannot Do for You.

Code Section

§ 14-05-01 et seq. of the North Dakota Code

Residency Requirements

Plaintiff resident for six months before the commencement of action or entry of divorce decree

Waiting Period

Decree must specify the time when parties may remarry

Grounds for Separation

The court may grant a temporary or permanent decree of separation for any cause for which a divorce may be decreed

'No-Fault' Grounds for Divorce

Irreconcilable differences

Defenses to a Divorce Filing

Condonation; lapse of time

Other Grounds for Divorce

Adultery; cruelty or violence; willful desertion or neglect; abuse of alcohol or drugs; conviction of a felony

Note: State laws are constantly changing, most often through the enactment of new legislation, decisions from higher courts, and other means. While we strive to ensure the accuracy of these pages, you also may want to contact a North Dakota divorce attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

Research the Law

North Dakota Divorce Requirements: Related Resources

Getting Divorced? A North Dakota Attorney Can Help

Whether you are merely contemplating a divorce or are in the beginning stages, it is always a good idea to have as much information as possible about North Dakota's divorce laws and procedures. A trusted legal counselor will be able to protect your interests and navigate the legal system.

Start today by reaching out to an experienced North Dakota divorce attorney.

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  • Divorces are tough and a lawyer can seek the best outcome
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