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Divorce Attorneys in Rhode Island

Going through a divorce is a roller coaster of emotions, and when you throw the legal process into the mix, it's easy to feel overwhelmed. Fortunately, you don't have to stress too much – there's help out there to guide you through it all.

In Rhode Island, getting the hang of divorce basics is your first step. You'll want to figure out if you qualify and what grounds you're filing on. After, in moments where hopes seem high, you will eventually be able to navigate the intricacies of child support and custody.

The legal team at The Law Offices of Howe & Garside, Ltd, has the resources, knowledge, and experience to inform you of all your options. By relying on them, you can make the legal process less complicated. and discover how the attorneys at the firm will look out for your best interests.  

Eligibility to File for Divorce in Rhode Island

To initiate a divorce proceeding in Rhode Island, at least one spouse must have resided in the state for a minimum of one year before filing the divorce petition. This residency requirement ensures the jurisdiction of Rhode Island courts over the divorce proceedings. 

Grounds for Divorce in Rhode Island

Rhode Island acknowledges both fault-based and no-fault grounds for divorce. Determining the grounds for divorce may seem complicated, but for the most part, they’re straightforward. If you find yourself in any of the following situations, you may have grounds for divorce: 

  • Irreconcilable Differences: This is the most common ground for divorce, where both parties agree that their differences are so significant that they are no longer able to coexist as a married couple. 

  • Fault-Based Grounds: These involve specific reasons such as adultery, extreme cruelty, impotency, or other similar behaviors. Fault-based grounds require proof and can potentially affect the outcome of the divorce, particularly when it comes to the division of assets and custody arrangements. 

  • Legal Separation: If the couple has been legally separated for at least three years, a divorce can be granted on these grounds. 

  • Desertion: If one spouse has deserted the other for at least five years prior to filing for divorce, this can serve as grounds for divorce. 

  • Substance Abuse: Habitual drunkenness or drug addiction can also serve as valid grounds for divorce in Rhode Island. 

  • Impotency: If one spouse is impotent and it adversely affects the marriage, it can serve as a ground for divorce. 

  • Neglect and Refusal: If a spouse neglects or refuses to provide support, despite having the ability to do so, it can serve as grounds for divorce.

Understanding the grounds for divorce is crucial as it can influence the outcome of your case. The Law Offices of Howe & Garside, Ltd understand family law and military divorce, and can provide the necessary legal guidance to ensure your rights are upheld throughout the divorce process.

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How Long Does a Divorce Take?

Depending on your specific circumstances and whether it is a contested divorce or an uncontested divorce, it can either be a quick or long process. The factors that determine the time frame include:  

  • Case Complexity: The complexity of each case plays a significant role in the duration of the divorce process. A straightforward case where both parties agree on all the terms can be resolved much faster than a contentious divorce involving disputes over assets, child custody, or alimony. 

  • Level of Agreement: The level of agreement between the parties involved can significantly impact the timeline. If both parties are willing to negotiate and reach agreements quickly, the divorce process can be expedited. 

  • Court Calendar: The court's schedule can also affect how long a divorce takes. If the court has a heavy caseload, it might take longer to get your case heard and resolved. 

  • Legal Requirements: Rhode Island law requires at least one spouse to have been a resident for a year before filing for divorce. This residency requirement can add time to the overall process if it hasn't been met. 

  • Professional Guidance: The guidance of experienced attorneys, like those at The Law Offices of Howe & Garside, Ltd, can often streamline the process. Their expertise can improve the efficiency of the proceedings, potentially reducing the time needed to finalize the divorce. 

In essence, a divorce process can take anywhere from a few months to several years. It's essential to remember that every case is unique, and timelines can fluctuate based on the specific circumstances surrounding the divorce. 

Child Custody 

When minor children are involved in a divorce, the courts in Rhode Island determine custody based on the best interests of the child. The factors considered include the child's relationship with each parent, the child's preferences (if of sufficient age and maturity), and the ability of each parent to provide for the child's physical and emotional needs. The court may grant both parents joint custody, or one parent may be awarded sole custody with visitation rights granted to the noncustodial parent. 

Child Support 

In Rhode Island, child support is determined based on the Rhode Island Child Support Guidelines. These consider various factors such as the income of both parents, the number of children, and any special needs or expenses related to the child's care. It's important to note that child support is typically paid until the child reaches the age of 18 or graduates from high school, whichever happens later.

Divorce Attorneys Serving Rhode Island 

The Law Offices of Howe & Garside, Ltd. understand the complexities and emotional toll that divorce proceedings can take. With a deep understanding of Rhode Island divorce laws, their team is well-equipped to provide guidance and support throughout this challenging process. They proudly serve clients across various locations in Rhode Island, including Newport, Lincoln, Providence, Warwick, Bristol, Westerly, Woonsocket, Pawtucket, and more.