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Louisiana Senate passes divorce and domestic violence bill

The Louisiana Senate recently passed Bill 292, which looks at the link between divorce and domestic violence. This bill, if written into law, would make it so that a divorce could immediately be granted to people who were filing if they could prove that they wanted the divorce on the grounds of domestic violence. This is something that is already a consideration when looking at covenant marriage laws, but this would make it easier for those couples to get a divorce.

The Senate approved the bill by a vote of 39 to zero. However, that does not yet make it a law, as it has been passed on for consideration by the House. Since it had such strong support in the Senate, it is likely that the House will feel the same way, but this could provide a roadblock if there are people who are opposed.

Right now, the only grounds for an immediate divorce are proof of an extramarital affair or conviction of one party for felony charges. The goal of the bill is simply to add domestic abuse to that list. At this time, the exact stipulations of the law have not been laid out as far as how the criminal investigation will impact the divorce proceedings, but unfounded allegations of abuse are not likely to be enough to be granted a divorce.

Before filing for a divorce, anyone who is interested in getting one needs to know what rights they have under the current laws. As shown, only a few things will grant an immediate divorce, though other things -- even things as simple as a major difference of opinion -- can be used. They will just take longer to go through the court process than evidence of an affair, a felony conviction, or, if the bill passes, of abuse.

Source: The Advocate, "Senate OKs domestic abuse divorce" No author given, Apr. 02, 2014

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