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Can I refuse to get a divorce?

The end of a marriage is not always easy to accept. You may feel that you can still work things out, which may lead you to want to fight the divorce and refuse to go through with it.

According to U.S. News and World Report, you, unfortunately, do not have the option to refuse to get a divorce. The only one that can stop the proceedings is your spouse who filed the paperwork.

The process

A spouse does not have to prove grounds to get a divorce in the U.S. in any state. There are also no legal requirements to prove fault. Generally, your spouse can file on the grounds that you are no longer compatible or that there was an unfixable breakdown of your marriage. There is nothing to prove as the court takes the person filing at his or her word when he or she testifies in court under oath about the marriage being over.

Your rights

While you do not have the right to prevent your spouse from divorcing you, you can refuse to communicate outside the courtroom. You can contest the terms of the divorce and leave all decisions up to the court.

If you choose to litigate instead of trying to come to an agreement, the judge will decide your case based on state law, which may not be advantageous to you. Your best option is to try to discuss how you feel with your spouse and suggest counseling to work on your marriage. If he or she refuses and stands firm on wanting a divorce, then you should at least try to work on a settlement.