There are several things that could cause a couple to cite ‘Irreconcilable Differences’ as a reason for divorce. The term is purposefully broad so that it can be interpreted in various ways on a case-by-case basis. Many common irreconcilable differences include:

  • Consistent arguing or fighting
  • Religious differences
  • Lack of emotional or sexual intimacy or compatibility
  • Tension from the involvement of either (or both) spouse’s family
  • Inability to communicate
  • Disagreements over finances or debt
  • Work/Life balance disagreements
  • Inability of a spouse to contribute meaningfully to the household
  • Long-distance separation
  • Personality differences
  • Differences of opinion over high-stakes topics such as raising children
  • Loss of trust
  • Having different wants/needs in life

Essentially, in the state of California, you have the ability to get a divorce on any grounds that cause one or both spouses to be no longer satisfied with the marriage.

What Does “Irreconcilable Differences” Mean As a Legal Term?

As stated above, ‘Irreconcilable Differences’ is a legal term for when a couple can no longer sustain a marriage due to any number of disagreements that they do not believe they can resolve. In Orange County, you do not need to prove that you and your spouse have irreconcilable differences in order to file for divorce; you need only to state it in your petition. In fact, once one spouse states that the divorce is due to irreconcilable differences, the divorce will proceed regardless of whether the other spouse signs the divorce petition. The other spouse’s refusal to agree, even to the necessity of a divorce, only highlights the fact that a couple has irreconcilable differences.

California is a “No-Fault” State; What Does That Mean For My Divorce?

In the state of California, irreconcilable differences are considered ‘no-fault’ grounds for divorce. What does that mean? Essentially, the party who files for divorce does not have to prove to the court that the other party committed some sort of act that caused the filing party to want a divorce. A spouse does not have to cheat or abandon the other party for them to feel the need to divorce the other; the marriage is simply beyond reconciliation under California’s current no-fault law. California, along with several other states, did away with the need for any party to prove fault several years ago. The following are the other sixteen states who currently have no-fault laws: 

  • Wisconsin
  • Oregon
  • Washington
  • Nevada
  • Nebraska
  • Montana
  • Missouri
  • Minnesota
  • Michigan
  • Kentucky
  • Kansas
  • Iowa
  • Indiana
  • Hawaii
  • Florida
  • Colorado

Is Citing Irreconcilable Differences What is Best for My Divorce Case?

Irreconcilable differences are very common grounds for divorce in no-fault states. Not only can it help make the often-messy process of divorce more smooth and quick, but it dismisses the need for one party to prove fault against the other party. However, every legal case is different. Each divorce proceeding is unique, and what’s right for some may not be what’s right for you. Seek consultation from a family law attorney to be as prepared as possible for your own divorce. Contact the Law Office of Patrick O’Kennedy today at (714) 919-1855 to schedule your consultation.