What is abandonment and is it considered grounds for a divorce?

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What is abandonment and is it considered grounds for a divorce?

My father picked up and left my mother, with no warning and no signs. He took money and does not intend to return. He is not seeing anyone else and there is no other lover in the picture. He says he needs to “find himself”. Is this abandonment and what does this mean for my family and me?

Asked on April 16, 2012 under Family Law, Wisconsin

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

I am so sorry for your situation.  It must be a very difficult time for you and for your family.  I think what you are asking is what are the grounds for divorce in Wisconsin.  Something called "rretrievable breakdown" of the marriage is the only grounds for divorce in Wisconsin.  It is what is known as a "no fault" divorce.  Using the word "abandonment" would be throwing blame or fault and the courts there do not do that.  But they do let you use the circumstaces surrounding the leaving to support the breakdown of the marriage.  It is somewhat complicated.  What yur Mother needs to do is to seek legal help possibly to start paperwork for a legal separation and to set up child support and alimony payments.  And you guys should get some counseling too. Good luck. 


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