Pasley and Singer Law Firm, L.L.P.

Serving Story County and Central Iowa since 1906

323 6th St.
Ames, IA 50010-0664

Phone: (515) 232-4732

FAMILY LAW :: Back to Practice Areas

I. General Information about Family Law
II. Marriage
     A. Traditional
     B. Common Law
III. Premarital/Prenuptial Agreement
IV. Divorce
     A. Grounds
     B. Fault or No-Fault
     C. Annulment
     D. Alienation of Affection
V. Alimony, Spousal Support and Maintenance
VI. Division of Property
     A. Community Property
     B. Equitable Distribution
VII. Adoption
     A. Public adoption
     B. Private adoption
     C. Transracial adoption
     D. Intra-national and International adoption
     E. Single parent adoption
     F. Summary of Adoption procedure
VIII. Child Custody and Visitation
IX. Child Support
X. Conclusion
Frequently Asked Questions

Fault or No-Fault

A fault divorce traditionally requires one spouse to prove that the other spouse was legally at fault to obtain a divorce. The “innocent” spouse is then granted a divorce from the “guilty” spouse. Today, many states still allow a spouse to allege fault in obtaining a divorce. The traditional fault grounds for divorce are adultery, abandonment (desertion), cruelty, imprisonment, physical incapacity and incurable insanity. Some courts consider fault in determining the amount of spousal support.

A no-fault divorce is a divorce in which the dissolution of a marriage does not require fault of either party to be shown. Either party may request, and receive, the dissolution of the marriage, despite the objection of the other party.

The following list of states allows no-fault divorce as the sole grounds for divorce:

• Arizona • Florida • Michigan • Washington
• California • Hawaii • Minnesota • Wisconsin
• Colorado • Indiana • Montana
• Deleware • Iowa • Nebraska
• District of Columbia • Kentucky • Oregon

The following list of states indicates those that have added no-fault to traditional divorce:

• Alabama • Maine • New York South Dakota
• Alaska • Maryland • North Dakota Tennessee
• Arkansas • Massachusetts • Ohio Texas
• Connecticut • Mississippi • Oklahoma Utah
• Georgia • Missouri •Pennsylvania •Vermont
• Idaho • New Hampshire •Rhode Island •Virginia
• Illinois • New Jersey • South Carolina • West Virginia
• Louisiana • New Mexico

The following list represents states that consider incompatibility as grounds for divorce:

• Alabama • Mississippi • New Mexico • Wyoming
• Alaska • Montana • Ohio
• Kansas • Nevada • Oklahoma

Many states have a “waiting period” before a couple can file for divorce. This is to enable them to possibly reconcile. The following list shows the prerequisite for couples residing apart and filing for divorce:

• Alabama - 2 years • Nevada - 1 year • Tennessee - 2 years
• Arkansas - 18 months • New Hampshire - 2 years • Texas - 3 years
• Connecticut - 18 months • New Jersey - 18 months • Utah - 3 years
• Hawaii - 2 years • New York - 1 year • Vermont - 6 months
• Illinois - 2 years • North Carolina - 1 year • Virginia - 1 year
• Louisiana - 6 months • Ohio - 1 year • West Virginia - 1 year
• Maryland - 2 years • Pennsylvania - 2 years • District of Columbia - 1 year
• Missouri - 1-2 years • Rhode Island - 3 years
• Montana - 180 days • South Carolina - 1 year

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Pasley and Singer Law Firm, L.L.P., is an Iowa general practice law firm with practice including, but not limited to  Administrative Law, Adoption Law, Agricultural Law, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Banking Law, Business Law (including business organization, partnerships, limited liability companies (LLCs), incorporations, and sales of businesses and business assets), Civil Rights, Commercial Law, Construction Law, Corporate Law, Criminal Defense, Elder Law, Employment Law, Family Law (including divorce, prenuptial agreements, child support, child custody, dissolution modification), Government, Government Contracts, Litigation, Personal Injury (including Motor Vehicle Accidents and Wrongful Death), Product Liability, Professional Negligence Law, Real Estate (including mortgage loan closings, IRC Section 1031 exchanges, subdivisions, platting, condominiums, and cooperative housing), Municipal Law, Taxation Law and Tax Preparation, Wills, Trusts, Estate Planning & Probate Law (including financial and medical powers of attorney, guardianships and conservatorships, trust administration, and estate administration), Workers Compensation, Zoning, Planning & Land Use

The offices of the Pasley and Singer Law Firm, L.L.P., are located in Ames, Iowa. The lawyers and staff of the Pasley and Singer Law Firm, L.L.P., serve clients throughout Iowa, including the cities of Ames, Nevada, Gilbert, Huxley, Slater, Zearing, Story City, Roland, McCallsburg, Colo, Cambridge, Sheldahl, Des Moines, Cedar Rapids, Fort Dodge, Waterloo, Marshalltown, Boone, Webster City, Eldora, Grundy Center, Newton, Adel, Eldora, Ankeny, Johnston, Indianola, Cedar Falls, Jefferson, Marshalltown, Clarion, Knoxville, and the communities that make up Story, Polk, Linn, Webster, Blackhawk, Marshall, Boone, Hamilton, Jasper, Dallas, Hardin, Warren, Greene, Wright, and Marion counties.