Alabama Divorce Law

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Alabama Divorce Guidelines

Alabama's Residency Requirements

The petitioner must have been an Alabama resident for 6 months prior to filing the divorce forms.

 

Alabama's Grounds for Divorce

Alabama residents may file for divorce under fault or no-fault grounds.

Alabama's no-fault grounds is:

  • incompatibility of temperament, which results in the irremediable breakdown of the marriage.

Alabama's fault grounds include:

  • abandonment for one year or more
  • adultery
  • conviction of a felony
  • incurable mental illness resulting in institutionalization for 18 months or more
  • substance abuse
 

Alabama's Child Custody Guidelines

Divorcing parents are allowed to collaborate on a child custody arrangement. If the parents cannot reach a decision, an Alabama court will make a ruling.

Alabama courts consider factors such as:

  • each parent's ability and desire to provide for the child and their needs
  • bond between each parent and child
  • wishes of the child, if the child is of a sufficient age and capacity to decide
  • whether the custodial parent would allow the noncustodial parent and the child to maintain a meaningful relationship
 

Alabama's Child Support Guidelines

If the parents cannot agree on the amount of child support and the paying parent, child support will be decided by state-specific calculations and guidelines.

Alabama courts consider factors such as:

  • the needs of the child
  • the standard of living the child was accustomed to
  • the custodial status of each parent
  • the parent's ability to pay the calculated child support
 

Alabama Spousal Support Guidelines

Spousal support can be paid in one lump sum, in installments, or periodically. The spouses may determine the spousal support amount and payment schedule, or the courts may award spousal support.

Alabama courts will consider factors such as:

  • the value of each spouse's estate
  • whether the marriage lasted 10 years or more
  • whether there was any marital misconduct
 

Alabama's Property Division Guidelines

Alabama has adopted equitable distribution guidelines, which means all property (including gifts and inheritances) will be divided as fairly and equally as possible. Spouses may collaborate on the property distribution, but if they are unable to agree the courts will make a ruling.

Alabama courts will consider factors such as:

  • length of the marriage
  • age, health, and earning capacity of each spouse
  • custodial status of each spouse
  • each spouse's' financial situation before and after the marriage
 

Alabama's Venue Guidelines

A petitioner may file the divorce forms in their county of residence, or in the respondent's county of residence.

If the petitioner is not a resident of Alabama, but the respondent is, the petitioner may file the divorce forms in the respondent's county of residence.

If neither the petitioner or respondent is an Alabama resident, but they lived in Alabama at the time of separation, the petitioner may file in that Alabama county.

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  • 2. Answer the Questions:

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  • 3. File the Documents:

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