State Laws

Maine Divorce


Maine Residency Requirements
Each state has different requirements for filing for divorce. One of these requirements is where the individuals filing reside. If any of the necessary requirements for the state of Maine are not met then the case will be dismissed. All divorce petitions are to be filed to the Maine bankruptcy court of the county where one or both of the individuals live.

Maine laws state that the individual filing for divorce must be a Maine resident for a minimum of six months prior to filing. The individuals also may file for divorce in Maine if they were married within the state lines.

Individuals may file for divorce if the grounds for divorce occurred while living in the state. If the individuals live in separate counties, a divorce petition can be filed to either individual's county divorce court.

If an individual is stationed in Maine due to the armed forces while on active duty, he or she is eligible to file for divorce within the state. His or her spouse does not have to be a Maine resident to participate in the divorce proceedings.

Maine Filing Grounds for Divorce
Each state has different grounds for divorce. These are the reasons why two individuals, or one individual, request a divorce. Not all divorce grounds of other states are legal in the state of Maine. The individuals may file for a divorce together and decided congruently the grounds for divorce, or one individual may bring the case before the court where he or she will have to prove the decided grounds.

Maine has two different categories of divorce grounds. The first category is under No-Fault grounds. This category cites that no individual is solely responsible for the marriage's dissolve. Irreconcilable difference is the only grounds legal under the No-Fault category. Individuals filing for a divorce on these grounds are often preceded by marriage counseling.

The second category is under Fault grounds. These grounds normally cite one individual responsible for the dissolve of the marriage. Fault grounds include nonsupport in a gross manner with the ability to provide, abusive and cruel treatment, adultery, extreme cruelty, impotence, desertion for three or more years before divorce petitioning, mental illness that requires confinement for a minimum of seven years prior to divorce filing, and habitual drunken behavior or habitual drug usage.

Divorce Documentation
Maine requires several different documents when filing for divorce. Some of these include a Complaint for Divorce and Judgment of Divorce, a Financial Statement, an Affidavit Concerning Child Custody, a Confidential Family Matter Summary Sheet, a Marital Settlement Agreement, and an Entry of Appearance. More documents may be necessary or fewer depending on the circumstances, subsequent children, and length of the marriage.

Distributing Property
Maine is considered as an equitable distribution state where all the property in the marriage is to be divided fairly rather than equally. If the individuals involved cannot reach a decision on subsequent property then the court will determine which spouse gets what kind of property. Property distribution can depend on which parent has custody of any children present.

See also:
Maine Gun Laws
Maine Bankruptcy
Maine DUI Laws
Maine Felony External link (opens in new window)
Maine Misdemeanors External link (opens in new window)
Maine Expungement External link (opens in new window)