How to Get Divorce in Kentucky

No one gets married with the intention to divorce someday. However, for a variety of reasons, you may find yourself contemplating divorce. If you are, it is very important that you understand the procedures and requirements for divorce, as they vary from state to state.

If you’re looking to get a divorce in Kentucky, you should know first about the residency requirements. Either the husband or wife must have lived in Kentucky for 180 days prior to filing for divorce. Both parties may reside in Kentucky during this time, but only one is required to do so. If one spouse is a member of the military and is stationed in Kentucky for 180 days prior to filing for divorce, that will also fulfill the residency requirements.

To get a divorce in Kentucky, the parties must also not cohabitate for at least 60 days prior to filing for divorce. This does not preclude couples who are divorcing from living in the same residence, however. A couple may live under the same roof and not be cohabitating if they are no longer sharing sexual relations.

The party who files the petition for divorce in Kentucky is known as the Petitioner, and the other party is known as the Respondent. Both the Petitioner and Respondent must affirm that the marriage is irretrievably broken, or one party must attest this fact without denial from the other. If one party wishes to contest the divorce, the court may order conciliation counseling in certain instances. However, the objection of one party is not enough to prevent a divorce, as this very disagreement shows irreconcilable differences between the spouses.

Kentucky is considered an equitable distribution state when it comes to marital property; that is, property acquired by the couple during the time they were married. Equitable distribution does not mean that all property or its value is divided 50/50, but that the property shall be divided in a way that is fair. For example, the spouse who contributed more to the household may end up with more property than the other one does. Couples divorcing in Kentucky are encouraged to come up with a plan for property distribution on their own, but the court can divide the property for them if they cannot.

Child custody, child support, and spousal support are decided on a case-by-case basis. Factors such as the reason the couple is divorcing, school attendance area issues, and the financial situation of each party are taken into consideration by the court when these issues are decided.

If the wife wishes to take her maiden or any other previous name back after the divorce, she may include that request in her petition. The court will generally allow this name change, especially if there are no minor children born of the marriage.

It is always a good idea to consult an attorney when filing for divorce in Kentucky. This is especially true if minor children are involved or if the parties cannot come to an agreement on their own in regards to property division or any other issues. If attorneys must be hired, each party should have his or her own attorney, as having the same attorney would be a conflict of interest. If both parties can come to an agreement on their own, however, the process of divorcing in Kentucky will go much more quickly and smoothly.


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