A common complaint is that divorce is too easy. That seems something of an overstatement, given what many people who have gone through the process of obtaining a divorce recently seem to think of their experience. Nevertheless, a legislator in Kansas, like ours here in Oklahoma, believes divorce is too easy, and wants to remove “incompatibility” as a ground for divorce.
On the surface, it does not seem that great a change, as he includes eight new grounds for divorce. Items like child and spousal abuse, adultery or abandonment are on the list. But these items are problematical.
These distinctions probably seem much more workable on the floor of the House of Representatives that they will be in a courthouse.
To obtain a divorce on the grounds of adultery, the other spouse will have to have been convicted. Check with your local district attorney’s office to find out how many cases of adultery they have prosecuted in the last year.
With the new categories, it is likely that divorce will take more time and become more expensive, as you will need to provide evidence in court that will prove child abuse or domestic violence.
Do people divorce because they “don’t respect marriage” as the legislator contends? Oddly, one ground would still allow divorce if both parties agree, which could be seen as not respecting marriage.
However, if one party is violent and manipulative, and refuses, the other party would have to remain married until they had enough evidence to prove something in court.
We worry that that evidence will need to be in the form of bruises and broken bones, or worse.