Rhode Island Divorce Law

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Rhode Island Divorce Guidelines

Rhode Island's Residency Requirements

Either spouse must have been a resident of Rhode Island for 1 year or more before filing for divorce.

Rhode Island's Grounds for Divorce

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

Rhode Island's no-fault grounds is:

  • irreconcilable differences, causing the irremediable breakdown of the marriage

Rhode Island's fault grounds include:

  • adultery
  • extreme cruelty
  • substance abuse and/or alcoholism
  • willful desertion for 5 years or more

Rhode Island's Child Custody Guidelines

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

Rhode Island courts consider factors such as:

  • the best interests of the child

Rhode Island'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.

Rhode Island courts consider factors such as:

  • the standard of living the child experienced during the marriage
  • each parent's financial resources
  • each parent's other financial obligations and needs

Rhode Island's 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.

Rhode Island courts consider factors such as:

  • the standard of living experienced during the marriage
  • each spouse's education, earning capacity, and contribution to the home, including homemaking and childcare
  • whether one spouse contributed to the other's education, career, and earning capacity

Rhode Island's Property Division Guidelines

Rhode Island 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.

Rhode Island courts consider factors such as:

  • duration of the marriage
  • each spouse's occupation, employability, and earning capacity
  • each spouse's contribution to the property, including acquisition and upkeep

Rhode Island's Venue Guidelines

The divorce forms may be filed in the petitioner's county of residence, or in the respondent's county of residence.

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"I have been trying to get divorced from my crazy wife for the past 5 years, and there was no simpler way than this site. Man it was great. Thank you !"

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Jun 8, 2012
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