• Washington, DC Divorce Attorney (202) 596-5716
    Washington, DC Divorce Attorney (202) 596-5716 Divorce, Collaborative Divorce, Child Custody, Family Law, Prenuptial Agreements

Can I get a no-fault Divorce in Washington, DC?

The idea of getting a divorce often brings up ideas of fighting and screaming.  Sometimes one spouse finds out the other is cheating or learns of some big secret that changes everything.  However, sometimes two people just realize they aren't right for each other and made a mistake in deciding to get married.

This is a perfectly understandable situation and the law in Washington, DC allows spouses who agree to get divorced, and agree on how any marital should be divided can get a no-fault divorce also long as they satisfy the required elements.

As Washington, DC divorce attorneys understand, Title 16, Chapter 9 of the DC Code provides that a divorce may be granted if the parties have lived separately for at least six months, and not cohabitated during that period of time, and both parties agree to end the marriage.  Cohabitating is essentially a legal term used in DC divorce cases to mean engaged in sexual intercourse. 

If both parties do not agree to get divorced, but have lived separate and apart from each other for one year without cohabitation, a no-fault divorce may be granted. Basically, this is situation where one spouse wants to get to divorced and the other does not want to get divorced.

Instead of a divorce, the DC Courts will also grant a legal separation to the parties if both parties agree to live separate and apart without having sexual relations.  If both parties do not agree to a legal separation, a court may still grant one if the parties have lived separate and apart for one year without cohabitation prior to filing an action with the court.

If both parties are in complete agreement, your attorney may be able to draw up the paperwork, file the necessary documents with the court, and get the divorce decree ordered by the judge without the need for lengthy litigation or excessive legal fees.


If the parties have children together, the court will need to be satisfied that all custody and visitation agreements are consistent with the wishes of both parents and in the best interests of the children.  This may involve a mental health professional interviewing the parties including the minor children when making a child custody order.

Another issue that can add some complexity to a divorce cases involves the division of marital assets and the payment of any spousal support (alimony).  Again, the best thing you can do to help make this process easier is to be honest and provide your divorce attorney with as much information as possible.

While you should speak with your attorney about the facts of your particular case, the fact that you may not be able to afford to live in a separate house or apartment from your spouse does not mean that you will be unable to get a divorce. 

It should be noted that some divorces will not end in such an amicable manner, and in those cases, you want to make sure that you have someone on your side who is truly looking out for your best interests and is willing to fight for you rights in court.


If you are thinking about getting a divorce in Washington, DC, please call 202.596.5716 for confidential consultation.


Practice Areas

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  • Washington, DC Child Custody and Visitation Law +

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