Information around divorce in Wisconsin. You will discover more indevelopment around divorce, including the risks of taking your youngsters out of state while a divorce is pfinishing, on our basic Divorce page. To watch brief videos about divorce in Spanish with English sub-titles, go to our Videos page. Lastly, learn even more about the court procedure on our Preparing for Court – By Yourself page.




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To file for divorce in Wisconsin, either you or your spousage must:

be a resident of the state of Wisconsin for at least six months; andbe a resident of the county you file in for at least 30 days prior to filing.1

A judge cannot grant a divorce in Wisconsin until it has been 120 days since:

you or your spousage received notification of the divorce that one of you filed; oryou both filed a joint petition together.2

However before, a judge deserve to grant you a divorce prior to 120 days pass if tright here are “emergency reasons” to do so. A judge deserve to approve you a divorce for emergency reasons if:

you filed a petition for protection for yourself or your youngsters and:the circuit court commissioner renders a reference to the judge for an immediate hearing on your petition for protection; andthe judge holds an prompt hearing on the petition; orthe judge decides to grant a divorce for other emergency factors.2

1 Wis. Stat. § 767.3012 Wis. Stat. § 767.335


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What are the grounds for divorce in Wisconsin?


A judge may grant a divorce on the grounds of the “irretrievable breakdown” of the marital relationship if one of the following is true:

both you and your spouse tell the judge, either by petition or under oath/affirmation, that the marriage is irretrievably broken; orone of you tells the judge, either by petition or under oath/affirmation, that the marriage is irretrievably damaged and also you and also your spousage have lived apart by option for at leastern 12 constant months instantly prior to filing for divorce.1

If you and also your spousage have actually not lived apart by choice for 12 months, and only one of you has told the judge, either by petition or under oath/affirmation, that the marriage is irretrievably damaged, it might still be feasible to get a divorce. The judge will certainly think about all pertinent factors, consisting of why you filed the petition, and then perform one of the following:

The judge have the right to decide that there is no reasonable opportunity of you and your spouse acquiring earlier together (reconciling) and provide the divorce; orIf the judge believes there is a reasonable possibility of you and also your spousage obtaining back together, s/he might proceed your case for 30-60 days and also indicate or order you both obtain counseling. You or your spousage have the right to additionally ask the judge to order counseling. If after 30-60 days, you or your spouse still tells the court under oath that the marital relationship is irretrievably broken, the judge have the right to grant a divorce.1

1 Wis. Stat. § 767.315; “Divorce: Answering Your Legal Questions,” State Bar of Wisconsin


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Can I get alimony/maintenance?


Alimony, dubbed “maintenance” in Wisconsin, is financial assistance passist by one spousage to the other. A judge deserve to order maintenance in Wisconsin after considering:

just how long the marriage lasted;your and also your spouse’s periods and also health and wellness conditions;the division of residential property in the divorce;your and your spouse’s education levels both once you got married and also at the time you filed for divorce;your capacity to earn money, consisting of your educational background, training, skills, work-related suffer, time ameans from the task industry, responsibility for the custody of children, and the moment and money forced to acquire education and training to discover employment;the likelihood you will certainly be able to support yourself so you deserve to live in the way you did while married, and also if feasible, the time needed to do so;the tax consequences to you and also your spouse;any agreement you and also your spouse made either before or in the time of the marriage to add financially or with service to the various other, and also if any repayment or agreement for financial assistance has been made;whether among you contributed to the education, training, or ability to earn money of the other; andany kind of other aspect a judge decides is appropriate.1

Maintenance in Wisconsin ends either as soon as a judge orders it to finish, or once either you or your spouse dies.2