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Do you need a 102 or 103 divorce?

On Behalf of | Mar 28, 2024 | Divorce

All divorces have their unique challenges, but divorce in Louisiana is a bit different than divorce in other states. If you live in Louisiana and you want a divorce, you have two options: a 102 or 103 divorce. 

These terms refer to the specific provisions of Louisiana’s Civil Code that outline the different paths to a divorce. What’s the difference?

102 divorces are no-fault

A 102 divorce, also known as a “no-fault” divorce, is based on the provision outlined in Article 102 of the Louisiana Civil Code. Under this provision, a couple can obtain a divorce if they have lived separate and apart continuously for either 180 days if there are no minor children from the marriage, or 365 days if there are minor children. Importantly, there is no requirement to prove fault or wrongdoing on the part of either spouse to obtain a 102 divorce.

The 102 divorce process typically involves filing a petition for divorce with the court, along with any necessary supporting documentation. Once the requisite separation period has elapsed, and all other legal requirements are met, the court can grant the divorce decree, officially ending the marriage.

103 divorces are based on fault

A 103 divorce, on the other hand, is based on fault grounds as outlined in Article 103 of the Louisiana Civil Code. This provision allows for divorce on various fault-based grounds, including adultery, felony conviction, physical or sexual abuse, or abandonment.

Unlike a 102 divorce, which is based solely on the couple living separately and apart for a specified period, a 103 divorce requires the filing spouse to prove the other spouse is at fault for the marriage’s decline. This is in addition to the separation requirements for a 102 divorce.

Both types of divorce will ultimately take you to your end goal, but it can be difficult to know which version you need without the right legal guidance.