Pennsylvania Grounds for Divorce

The Complaint for Divorce is the initial document filed with the Pennsylvania court. It is in this document that the filing will request the court to terminate the marriage under certain specified grounds.

No-Fault Based Grounds:
The court may decree a divorce where it is alleged that the marriage is irretrievably broken and 90 days have elapsed from the date of filing or when the marriage is irretrievably broken and an affidavit has been filed alleging that the parties have lived separate and apart for a period of at least two years.

Fault Based Grounds:
1.Committed willful and malicious desertion period of at least one year. 2.Adultery. 3.By cruel and barbarous treatment, endangered the life or health of the injured and innocent spouse. 4.Bigamy. 5.Incarceration for at least 2 years. 6.Offered such indignities to the innocent and injured spouse as to render that spouse’s condition intolerable and life burdensome. (Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes - Title 23 - Sections: 3301)

Every divorce case that is filed in the state of Pennsylvania must declare the grounds in which the divorce is to be granted. The grounds for divorce must be substantiated with evidence or testimony otherwise the court may dismiss the case. When you are petitioning the court for a divorce, or agreeing to a divorce, make sure that you completely understand the grounds and any potential legal repercussions. If you would like to learn more about the Pennsylvania grounds, visit the Pennsylvania state statutes located at: