KENTUCKY DIVORCE BASICS AND OVERVIEW
|This is a reference guide to understanding Kentucky no-fault divorce laws and legal separation basics. Each state has its own requirements, laws, and documentation, so we decided to gather it all in one location to make it easy and quick for you to find the information you need before, during and after your divorce.|
- Time Frame: When the divorcing spouses reach an agreement on all issues about the divorce, they ask the court to schedule a final hearing after 60 days have passed since the initial filing date.
- Where to File: Circuit court. "___________ Circuit Court, Kentucky."
- State Statutes: Kentucky Revised States: Title XXXV, Chapter 403.
- Name of Action: Dissolution of Marriage.
- Name of Parties: Petitioner, the filing spouse, and respondent, the other spouse.
- No-Fault or Fault and No-Fault Only: No-Fault. Irretrievable breakdown is the only grounds for dissolution of marriage.
- Primary Documents Filed: Petition for Dissolution of Marriage and Decree of Dissolution of Marriage.
- Physical Separation Required: Yes.
- Separation Time to File: Yes. The spouses must live apart for 60 days.
- Legal Separation Permitted: Yes. Irretrievable breakdown is the only grounds for legal separation, which is divorce from bed and board.
- Grounds: Irretrievable breakdown is the only grounds for dissolution of marriage.
- Residency Requirement: The petitioner must have lived in the state, or been an active member of the military stationed in the state, for at least 180 days before filing. Only credible witnesses can prove residency if needed.
- Mediation Required: No. Kentucky does not provide for mandatory mediation.
- Counseling Required: If one of the parties denies that the marriage is irretrievably broken, the court may continue the case for no fewer than 30 days or no more than 60 days and suggest counseling. The court considers prospect of reconciliation, and then rules whether the marriage is irretrievably broken or not.
- Parenting Classes Required: Attendance at a parenting class may be required. Parents and children (offered to children 5 to 17 although ages may vary by county) attend Families In Transition (FIT), which offers them a six-hour educational program about coping with the problems that result from divorce and developing a plan for co-parenting successfully.
- Filing Fee: $113.
- Where to File for Child Support: the Kentucky Child Support Enforcement Hotline (1-800-248-1163), which can help locate a missing parent. Relevant information - his or her last known address, employer, support and paternity orders - is helpful.
- Child Support Guidelines Model: Kentucky uses the Incomes Shares Model to determine child support. The child support obligation set forth in the child support guidelines table is divided between the parents in proportion to their combined monthly adjusted parental gross income.
The Child Support Guidelines for Kentucky are located in the Kentucky Revised Statutes section 403.212. Child support is divided between the parents in proportion to their "combined monthly adjusted parental gross income." When the the upper limits of the child support table are exceeded, the court will use discretion on a case-by-case basis. In calculating support, the court also considers alimony to prior spouses as well as child support to children of other relationships. The court also uses potential income in calculating the support obligation of a parent who is under employed or unemployed. Parents may decide to agree on a child support amount that is higher or lower than the amount determined using the Kentucky statutes. If this is the case, the court will examine the reasoning behind the adjustment, and if it is reasonable will often agree and order the adjusted amount as the monthly child support obligation.
Kentucky Child Support Guidelines and Worksheets:
- Property Division: Kentucky is an equitable distribution state.
- Appreciation of Separate Property: The appreciation of separate property is separate.
- Attendance at Hearing: No, not required.
- Fault Considered in Property Division: The court divides the marital estate without regard to marital misconduct.
- Waiting period after Divorce for Remarriage: None.
- Ways to Serve Spouse: Service may be made upon any party who is located out of state either by certified mail or by personal delivery of a copy of the Summons and of the Petition by a person over 18.