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Divorce in Vermont

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Nicknamed The Green Mountain State, Vermont has divorce laws that aim at severing the marital relationship and dividing assets and debts.

You can file for divorce in Vermont if either you or your spouse has lived in Vermont for at least six months. Additionally, the court will grant you a divorce once either of you has lived in the state for at least one year before the final hearing. Temporal residency outside Vermont caused by illness, due to a job, or any legitimate reason won’t affect the residency requirement.1

Vermont is both a fault and no-fault divorce state. Most no-fault divorce cases are filed based on the reason of living “separately and apart” for at least six months and that the marriage can’t be salvaged. Fault grounds for divorce in Vermont include adultery, permanent incapacitation due to a mental condition, willful desertion for at least seven years, extreme cruelty, incarceration for three years or more, or neglect.2

Vermont is an equitable distribution property state, and property acquired both during and before the marriage can be subject to division. Vermont divorce laws attempt to distribute marital property in a manner believed to be fair and equitable. The judge can consider factors such as non-monetary contributions, contributions to a partner’s education, and economic misconduct during the property distribution case.3

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1VT ST 15 § 592(a)

2VT ST 15 § 551

3VT ST 15 § 751