By James Jennings
We have done countless divorces involving convenant marriage over the years and is one of the most confussing topics for people to understand.
So what is a convenat marriage and how do I get divorced if I have one?
In 1998 the State Legislature created a type of marriage in Arizona called "covenant marriage." It did not replace the kind of marriage already available. Instead it offered an additional option to couples who wish to marry.
The covenant marriage differs both in the steps necessary to get married and the reasons why a legal separation or divorce may be granted by the court.
To enter into a covenant marriage, the couple first must have premarital counseling from a member of the clergy or a marriage counselor. Then, when applying for a license to be married, both persons must show their intention to enter into a covenant marriage by signing a declaration on the application form. In a covenant marriage, legal separation or divorce may be granted by the court only for specific reasons listed in state law.
To get a divorce, any one of the following reasons must be true.
1. Your spouse has committed adultery.
2. Your spouse has committed a felony and has been sentenced to death or imprisonment.
3. Your spouse has abandoned you for more than 2 years and refuses to come back.
4. Your spouse has either (1) physically or sexually abused you, a child or a relative of either of you who lives permanently in your home, or (2) committed domestic violence (defined in Section 13-3601 of the Arizona Revised Statutes) or emotional abuse.
5. Your spouse and you have been legally separated for more than 1 year.
6. Your spouse regularly abused drugs or alcohol.
7. You and your spouse agree to end the marriage.