Category Archives: No Fault Divorce


Are you contemplating divorce? If you decide to take the plunge, in your divorce papers you will need to indicate on what “ground” you are divorcing. In other words, you must note the reason why you’re filing for a divorce. In Pennsylvania, spouses can file for divorce on both fault and no-fault grounds.

If a spouse wants to file a “fault” divorce, he or she is essentially accusing the other spouse of engaging in some sort of misconduct, for example, they are saying that their spouse committed adultery, or they walked out on the marriage for at least a year, or they committed domestic violence.

A spouse can file for a fault divorce on the following grounds:

  • Adultery
  • Bigamy
  • Abandoning a spouse for a year or longer
  • Spousal abuse, or another form of cruelty
  • Convicted of a crime and sent to prison for at least two years
  • Humiliation to such an extent, it makes marriage intolerable

Does misconduct impact property division?

This is a good question! Generally, judges do not consider misconduct, such as committing a crime, or family violence, or cheating when dividing property, however, a judge is entitled to consider a spouse’s misconduct when they are deciding whether or not to award spousal support or alimony.

No-Fault Divorce: a Better Way

A fault-based divorce can lead to costly litigation and a protracted divorce. Often, fault-based divorces are more stressful on all involved and they can literally drain the marital estate. If you want to avoid a full-blown court battle, you may want to consider the benefits of having a no-fault divorce instead, even if your spouse made his or her share of mistakes.

When you file a no-fault divorce, you are not blaming your spouse, at least not “on the record.” You’re not airing your dirty laundry; you are filing your divorce on the ground of “irretrievable breakdown,” which means your marriage is broken beyond repair, period.

In Pennsylvania, there are two types of no-fault divorce. A mutual consent no-fault divorce and irretrievable breakdown without mutual consent. The first is self-explanatory and by far, the most ideal of the two options.

With a mutual consent no-fault divorce, you and your spouse agree that your marriage is irretrievably broken, and you both agree to get divorced. In a mutual consent divorce, you can obtain be divorce as soon as 90 days after the divorce action is filed.

No-Fault Divorce Without Mutual Consent

If you want to end your marriage but your spouse refuses to consent to the divorce, you could file a no-fault divorce, however, you would have to file an affidavit with the court stating that you have lived separate and apart from your spouse for at least two years before the court could grant you a divorce.

If your spouse is willing to agree to a divorce, we recommend filing a no-fault, mutual consent divorce. This way, you can achieve the most cost-effective divorce possible and you can begin the next chapter of your life as a divorced person within a few months of filing the divorce papers.

Learn all about our affordable, no-fault divorces by contacting our firm directly!


Some states, such as California allow married couples to get legally separated as an alternative to divorce. In California for example, a married couple can get legally separated to give themselves time to see if they want a divorce, or if they don’t believe in divorce, they can get legally separated instead and remain that way indefinitely.

In the meantime, the California family courts can issue orders regarding child custody, child support, asset and debt division, and spousal support. So, can Pennsylvania couples get legally separated like couples in places like California?

Is There Legal Separation in PA?

Pennsylvania does not recognize legal separations. If you’re “separated” from your spouse, it means the two of you are living separate and apart, whether you’re living in two households or even under the same roof.

Separation between married spouses can occur when:

  • The couple mutually agrees to get a divorce.
  • One spouse kicks the other spouse out of the house.
  • One spouse voluntarily moves out of the house.

Divorce Requirements in Pennsylvania

In order to get a divorce in Pennsylvania, you have to meet certain requirements. For starters, you must meet the residency requirement. To meet the residency requirement, you or your spouse, or both of you, must have lived here for six months before you can file for divorce.

Second, you must be “separated” for one yearbefore you can file for divorce. If you are still living together, this can get a bit tricky, especially if you’re still having marital relations and sleeping in the same bed. While it’s best for the spouses to be living in separate households, if that’s not convenient, we advise sleeping in separate bedrooms and living separate lives – no date nights and no more dinners with friends “as a couple.”

Once you break up and decide to get a no-fault divorce, you want to make sure that you are no longer behaving as a married couple, otherwise it could delay your divorce proceedings and derail the one-year waiting period imposed by the courts.

Related: Why is the Date of Separation Important?

To learn more about the separation requirements for divorce in Pennsylvania and our $319 divorces, contact No Contest Divorce Law, LLC today!


Reinforcing the stability of marriage while minimizing the impact of divorce should be the ultimate goal of divorce law in Pennsylvania.

That was the intention of the state’s lawmakers, but sadly, that was not the result.

Under current state law, divorcing couples must wait a mandatory two-year waiting period to obtain a no-fault divorce. Instead of giving couples the time to “think it over,” the law had the unintended consequence of promoting litigation and harming the well-being of children.

There is hope; after studying the process for more than 20years, legislation sponsored by Rep. Tarah Toohil (R-Luzerne) would cut that waiting period from two years to one year, and now the legislation is making its way through the General Assembly.

Last month, the bill was overwhelmingly approved by the House, and now it’s before the state Senate. Since the Pennsylvania Bar Association has seen first-hand the ramifications of a protracted divorce, they have made it known that they support this proposal.

How would the bill change the status quo? It would change it so the mandatory separation period goes from two years to one year in no-fault divorces filed based on irretrievable breakdown.

This means that after one year, the divorcing parties would be allowed to start dividing their assets and determining whether alimony should be awarded.

While the change may seem insignificant, it can have a huge impact, especially on families going through a contentious divorce. When divorce is delayed and the battle is prolonged, children don’t advance developmentally while parents continue arguing, according to family therapists who testified at a September House Judiciary Committee hearing.

In effect, children are often caught in limbo. They’re not sure what school they’ll attend, where they’ll live, or who they’ll live with.

What’s more, a bitter spouse overcome by disdain can willfully delay, for the full two years, the addressing of economic issues associated with the divorce.

As long as there is a two-year delay, there will be angry husbands and wives who continue to control their estranged spouses. The delay has proven not to help couples reconcile, as lawmakers originally hoped.

Tragically, Pennsylvania couples discovered that the two-year waiting period only prolongs the hurt for the divorcing parties and their children. A shorter waiting period will enable parents to create a stable routine for the children more quickly, and it allows financial issues to be resolved much faster.

Need a Pennsylvania no-fault divorce attorney? Contact No Contest Divorce, LLC today!


In the Pennsylvania legal system, people have the right to represent themselves in criminal and civil cases, but that does not mean they should. You’ve probably heard about criminal defendants firing their public defenders or private criminal defense attorneys and representing themselves, and as we all know, that never ends well. Is divorce any different?

From a legal standpoint you are entitled to represent yourself – this is called “pro se,” which means “on your own behalf” in Latin, but the practicality of this is highly questionable. If you ask any divorce lawyer, they will say that representing yourself is not a good idea, especially if you’re not an experienced family law attorney.

Would you perform your own dental extraction or heart surgery? Certainly not, and you don’t want to handle your own divorce either. What you would save initially in legal fees would most likely end up costing you dearly in the long-run.

Even in the friendliest, no-fault divorces, there are legal and financial matters that require legal expertise, such as:

  • Taxes
  • Child custody
  • Child support
  • Spousal support
  • Property and debt division
  • Pensions
  • Retirement accounts
  • Life and health insurance
  • What to do with the marital residence
  • What to do with a business

When you file for divorce in Pennsylvania, it’s important that you understand your rights and responsibilities in regards to the topics listed above. If you do not handle one or more of these issues correctly, you could be giving up important rights without knowing it, and it’s just not worth taking the risk.

Mutual Consent Divorce in Pennsylvania

Let’s take a look at mutual consent vs. no-consent divorces: Pennsylvania does not operate like many other states, such as California, where you can get a divorce in about six months as long as one of you wants out.

Instead, if a spouse does not want a divorce in Pennsylvania, you have to live separately and apart for at least two full years before the state can grant you a divorce. It’s essentially delaying the inevitable, but until the laws change that’s the way it is.

Most divorce lawyers will attest that the majority of unhappy spouses do not want to wait two years to get divorced. Therefore, it’s considerably more favorable to seek a mutual consent, no-fault divorce. When our clients agree to a no-fault divorce, we can help them obtain a divorce in as little as 30 days, which is one of the shortest waiting periods for a divorce in the nation.

Quality Divorce Services Don’t Have to Break the Bank

When you file for divorce, it’s critical to have an experienced divorce lawyer representing you and looking out for your best interests. If you’ve been afraid to file for divorce because of the legal fees, you don’t have to fret any longer.

At No Contest Divorce, LLC, you can receive quality divorce representation at a fraction of the cost of other divorce law firms. As long as you and your spouse agree to a mutual consent, no-fault divorce, we can help you achieve a quick, affordable divorce in as little as 30 days. If you’re ready to get started, contact us today!


Researchers estimate that 45 to 50% of first marriages end in divorce in the United States. For second and subsequent marriages, the divorce rate is even higher. You may ask, “Why is the divorce rate so high in the United States?”

Many experts and divorce attorneys agree that two factors play a key role in the rate of divorce: 1) women are more economically independent than ever before, and 2) divorce is socially acceptable in the 21st century.

Even though more of America’s women are college educated and financially independent than they were in the 1970s and earlier, that doesn’t change the fact that a lot of spouses (men and women) put off a divorce for financial reasons and financial reasons alone. Many of our clients cited these economic reasons for putting off their divorce:

  • Afraid of losing their hard-earned assets
  • Afraid they can’t afford to pay child and/or spousal support
  • Afraid of giving half of their retirement to their spouse
  • Afraid of losing the marital residence
  • Afraid they can’t afford to support themselves or their family (often, stay at home moms) without their spouse’s income
  • Afraid of having to go back to work after a long hiatus
  • Don’t want to pay spousal support
  • Afraid they’ll be broke if they get a divorce
  • Afraid of being stuck with all of the marital debt

If you notice, we used the word “afraid” a lot. That’s because too many unhappy spouses put off filing for divorce because they have a lot of fear about what will happen to them financially. Most of these fears come from the unknown and not knowing much about how divorce will affect one’s finances.

Have money fears prevented you from taking the plunge?

If you’re in an unsatisfying marriage but you’ve held on because you’re afraid of ending up penniless, we have good news for you. Pennsylvania’s divorce laws are aimed at being fair. If you can’t afford to pay spousal support, there’s a good chance the judge will not order it.

If you’ve only been married for a year or two and you’re wealthy, the judge isn’t going to divide all of your assets down the middle and give the other half to your spouse; it doesn’t work like that.

Instead, the judge will look at only the assets acquired during the marriage, and after carefully reviewing your situation, the judge will decide on a fair and equitable distribution, unless of course you and your spouse reach an agreement on your own.

If you’re headed for divorce, here are some things to start thinking about today to prepare yourself financially:

  • If you’re the lower-earning spouse, you cannot rely on spousal support because it’s not guaranteed. Start thinking about what you need to do to become financially independent and self-supporting.
  • If you’re the higher-earning spouse, start thinking about ways to increase your income. If you’re ordered to pay child and/or spousal support, you’ll probably need more income to be comfortable.
  • Focus on paying off debt and living below your means.
  • Create a post-divorce budget today.
  • Think, “What can I do to become more successful?” If going back to school or working hard for a promotion will help you out, then by all means do it.
  • Find ways to cut down on your expenses.
  • If you’re not already, start saving 10% of your income so you have a safety net.
  • If you can afford one, hire a financial advisor to help you plan for retirement as a single person.
  • Ask your divorce attorney for advice on how to protect your credit during a divorce.
  • If you’re in the dark about your finances, now is the time to get intimately familiar with them.

Divorce does not have to be the big financial blow that people fear it will be. While you’ll need to reorganize your life and your priorities, if you play your cards right, you can change your economic circumstances for the better.

One of the best ways to get started on the right foot is to agree to a mutual consent, no-fault divorce through No Contest Divorce, LLC. With our services, it’s possible to achieve a fast and cheap divorce in no time at all. To learn more about our low-cost divorce services, contact our office directly!


Instead of handling contested or litigated divorces, our firm focuses on helping spouses who are seeking an uncontested, no-fault divorce. While we may be the home of the cheap, “quickie” divorce, there’s nothing second rate about our services.

While we’re big advocates of a fast, no-fault, mutual consent divorce, we do not promote that our clients obtain a divorce without a settlement agreement. A settlement agreement is a legally-enforceable agreement between two divorcing spouses. Meaning, it will stand up in court.

The settlement agreement addresses important issues, such as what will happen to your children, who will keep what property, and who will pay which debts after the divorce is finalized.

While a divorce attorney can prepare a settlement agreement before, during, or after a divorce, we recommend that the spouses enter into a settlement agreement before the divorce is finalized.

Why Reach an agreement before the divorce is final?

Sure, you may be in a hurry to get divorced, but we don’t recommend rushing the divorce and putting the settlement agreement off “for another day.” You and your spouse may be on the same page about the divorce now, but afterwards, disagreements over property division, child custody, and debts may arise.

When you anticipate these potential setbacks before they arise and address them in a settlement agreement, you save yourself a lot of headache and frustration. You may even be saving yourself a few trips back to court (not to mention the expense) by getting it all in writing before your divorce is final.

We Prepare Settlement Agreements

As Pennsylvania no-fault divorce attorneys, one of our main services is preparing settlement agreements for our clients. We have the knowledge and experience to help you create a proposal for your spouse regarding child custody, visitation, and property distribution.

If your spouse has disagreements with one or more aspects of the proposal, or if they’d like to incorporate their suggestions, we’d be glad to go back to the drawing board and make the necessary changes until we reach an agreement that you both are satisfied with.

Even if you and your spouse have already made verbal agreements about your children and property, we’ll help draw up a written agreement so you can memorialize those agreements in a legally-enforceable legal document.

Learn more about the benefits of a settlement agreement and our low-cost divorce services by giving us a call today!


If you have decided to get a divorce, you may or may not be apprehensive about the whole process. For example, if you and your spouse have minor children together and you have acquired some marital assets, such as a nice home with a little equity, you may be nervous about child custody and property division.

When we represent clients in their divorce actions, we highly recommend that spouses create marital settlement agreements before the divorce is final. Settlement agreements can address what happens to a couple’s assets and debts, and what happens to their children.

In a standard marital settlement agreement, the couple will agree on the following:

  • Child custody
  • Visitation
  • Property division
  • Debt division
  • What will happen to the marital home
  • Spousal support (if any)
  • What will happen to a spouse’s business (if applicable)

Marital settlement agreements are very valuable tools. Why? Because they allow spouses to reach agreements on very important issues, they give the spouses clarity on what to expect, and they can help spouses avoid having to go to court later for these specific issues because they failed to do so during the divorce.

Settlement agreements put everything in writing in a legally-enforceable, legally-binding document. However, it’s important to note one key facet of these agreements – certain provisions contained within are subject to change.

If you were worried that you could never go back to court and ask for a change in child custody or support, or spousal support, you can breathe a sigh of relief because these may be changed in the future – they are not necessarily set in stone.

Family Court Judges Know That Things Change

If you are about to ask for a divorce, it’s important that you know that your life will go through a lot of changes in the next 5 to 10 years, and same goes for your children and your soon-to-be ex-spouse. For example, you could remarry and want to relocate, or your spouse may do the same.

You may lose your job, or your ex may lose theirs. If you’re paying spousal support, your ex may re-marry before your spousal support payments are supposed to end. Or, your son may dislike your ex-wife’s new husband and when he’s 14, he may want to move in with you instead.

Perhaps you’re a stay-at-home mom today, but after going back to school and getting a nursing license, you may dramatically increase your income. In that case, your ex-husband may go back to court and ask to lower your spousal support payments. Or, your ex-husband may have a $100,000 per year increase in pay, and you may want to ask the court to increase his child support obligation.

Post-Judgement Modifications

Whatever marital settlement agreement you and your spouse agree to, we want you to know that matters pertaining to child custody, visitation, child support, and spousal support can be changed in the future.

Either spouse can ask the court for a post-judgement modification, however, the petitioning spouse must show the court a significant change in circumstances warrants their request for a change.

Looking for a Pennsylvania no-fault divorce lawyer? Contact No Contest Divorce, LLC today!


Are you planning on filing for divorce after the holidays? If so, you have plenty of company. Historically, January is the busiest month for divorce filings across the nation. In contrast, December is the time of year when many (but not all) couples hold off on filing for divorce so they can get through the holidays without dampening the “holiday cheer” or having to handle court documents while entertaining friends and family.

If you’re going to file for divorce after January 1st, it will help if you start preparing in the month of December. This way, once you do start the divorce process, you’ll have a lot of the legwork out of the way. Here are four tips to help get the ball rolling before the New Year:

1. Run your credit report. Contact the three credit bureaus, Equifax, Experian and TransUnion, and request a free copy of your credit report. Examine these printouts to see which accounts are open, how much you owe, and which accounts are “joint.” You will need this information when deciding how to divide debts. You also need to know which accounts are joint so you can put the accounts in one spouse’s name alone, or pay them off and close them. The goal is to cut the financial ties to your spouse so you can get a fresh start.

2. Copy all of the financial documents. As a part of the divorce, you’ll need to gather and make copies of all important financial documents. This includes credit card statements, medical bills, auto loans, insurance policies, mortgage papers, investments, retirement accounts, and of course tax returns.

3. Educate yourself on Pennsylvania’s divorce laws. Knowledge is power and divorce is no exception. During the month of December, take this time to research Pennsylvania’s divorce laws as they pertain to asset and debt division, spousal support, child support and child custody. We also recommend researching the difference between fault and no-fault divorce in Pennsylvania.

4. Create a post-divorce budget. The more prepared you are for divorce, the better. One way to prepare yourself is to create a post-divorce budget. Take into consideration housing, utilities, health insurance, your auto loan (where applicable), auto insurance, food, credit card bills, student loans, etc. Also, take child support and spousal support into consideration. As far as child support is concerned, will you be receiving or paying it? If so, how much? Unlike child support, spousal support is not guaranteed, but be sure to ask your divorce lawyer if spousal support will be a factor in your divorce.

Searching for a divorce attorney in Pennsylvania? To learn about our cheap divorce services, contact our firm today!


If you’re seriously contemplating a divorce, you may be afraid of the costs involved. You might have heard people say something to the effect of, “Don’t even try to negotiate your own divorce settlement. That’s what attorneys are for.”

As you think of these warnings, you begin to imagine the attorney fees rising until you begin to rationalize, “I can’t afford to get a divorce.” Fortunately, there is light at the end of the tunnel and it is possible to obtain a cheap, no-fault divorce in no time at all, but there’s a catch: you and your spouse need to work together to reach a fair settlement.

No Contest Divorce, LLC Encourages You to Negotiate Yourself

At No Contest Divorce, LLC, we help couples obtain cheap, no-fault divorces. Unlike other law firms, we actually encourage spouses to negotiate their own divorce settlement. This may go against conventional wisdom, but it’s proven to be a highly-effective way for couples to obtain a low-cost divorce within a short timeframe.

“Most lawyers will tell you not to even try to negotiate your own divorce settlement. That’s because lawyers believe that they can negotiate for you better than you can negotiate for yourself,” Karen Covy wrote in HuffPost. About negotiating your own divorce, Covy said, “it’s not rocket science.”

“While divorce negotiations are definitely not for everyone, negotiating even a part of your own divorce settlement can save you time and money, if you do it right!” Covy wrote. We have to agree with Covy because that’s how our clients are able to obtain a divorce for just $319, including court costs and legal fees – by being cooperative with each other until they reach a mutually-satisfying divorce settlement.

Quick tips for negotiating:

  • Educate yourself on Pennsylvania’s divorce laws so you know your rights and responsibilities under the law.
  • Understand your assets, debts and post-divorce bills before you open your mouth.
  • If you have kids, make sure you understand the law in regards to child custody and support.
  • Know what you want and ask your attorney if it’s fair.
  • Do a post-divorce budget so you understand what you need.
  • Put yourself in your spouse’s shoes, and ask them to put themselves in yours.
  • Agree to work towards a fair, mutually-acceptable agreement.
  • Be polite and respectful and treat it like a business transaction. Check your emotions at the door.
  • Know what you want, but be flexible when necessary and remain open to advice and suggestions from your spouse and your divorce attorney.

To learn more about negotiating a no-fault divorce, contact No Contest Divorce, LLC today. We are here to give you the guidance you need during this difficult time.


If you’re like most adults in the United States, you log onto Facebook at least once a day. You probably have an Instagram and Twitter account too. While platforms, such as Facebook and Twitter can be great for staying connected to friends and family, they can wreak havoc during the divorce process.

According to the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML), “If your status is separated or going through a divorce, you might want to stay off Facebook.” Why? Because an “overwhelming 81% of the nation’s top divorce attorneys say they have seen an increase in the number of cases using social networking evidence during the past five years,” according to the AAML.

Social Media Can Hurt No-Fault Divorces

At No Contest Divorce, LLC, we specialize in affordable, no-fault divorces in Pennsylvania. Our clients do not file for divorce on fault-based grounds. Instead, our clients collaborate to achieve a cheap, no-fault divorce is a short period of time. If a client’s amicable divorce becomes unfriendly or uncontested, we can no longer help them.

Since we strive to help people obtain no-fault divorces for just $319, it’s very important that our clients continue to work with their spouses to agree on a divorce settlement. In order to keep things peaceful during the divorce process, we encourage our clients to be polite and respectful to their spouses and this includes behaving on social media.

There are many ways that a friendly divorce can turn ugly with social media. With that in mind, here are some things NOT to do on social media while trying to achieve a no-fault divorce:

  • Don’t switch your relationship status to “single” while you’re still married. In fact, don’t switch it to “it’s complicated either.” Our advice is to keep your status as “married” until your divorce is finalized.
  • Don’t badmouth your soon-to-be-ex on social media. This will only antagonize him or her.
  • Do not post pictures of you drinking alcohol or partying during a divorce, especially if you have minor children. Such pictures can affect child custody.
  • Do not post pictures of you dating, or posing with a date. This can make your spouse think you’re seeing other people and it can anger them.
  • Don’t post about the divorce at all. Divorce is very private and should be discussed with a best friend over a cup of coffee, not aired out to 500 casual acquaintances on Facebook.
  • Don’t post pics of you spending a lot of money as this can raise red flags. In other words, avoid posting about costly vacations, expensive restaurants, new cars, days at the spa, or other extravagant purchases.

During a divorce, you can take a hiatus from social media until it’s over. Or, if you stay on social media, don’t post anything that you wouldn’t want your spouse, their divorce attorney, or the judge to see. This is the time to keep your posts clean, positive, and uplifting – avoid posting anything that would cause someone to question your character.

Looking for a divorce lawyer in Pennsylvania? Contact No Contest Divorce, LLC to schedule a free consultation with a member of our legal team!