What Is No Fault Divorce?xxxxx

Nebraska is a "no-fault" divorce state. This means that with regard to property division, it makes no difference who is "at fault" in the marriage or who "caused" the divorce or who "wants" the divorce, the Court will divide property between the parties in a range between 1/2-1/2 and 1/3-2/3.

Under the old "fault" system of divorce, if one party proved to the Court that the other party was "at fault" (for example, because of physical abuse, alcoholism, etc.), the judge had the authority to penalize that person by awarding most or all of the marital property to the aggrieved spouse. Under the new no fault laws, fault cannot be considered for property division - the Court must award the property between the parties on an equitable basis, that is, from 1/2-1/2 to 1/3-2/3.

This also means that even if your spouse has squandered assets during the marriage (for example, through drug or alcohol abuse or unwise investments), you will probably not be reimbursed. Similarly, if you supported your spouse throughout the marriage and the spouse did not work, you will probably not be reimbursed for that.

With regard to custody of children, fault can be a factor. This means that if you and your spouse are contesting custody of your children, negative aspects about you or your spouse can be brought to the attention of the Court as reasons why custody should not be awarded to that person. This is explained in more detail in the section on Child Custody


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