Does it take two consenting parties to get a divorce?

Question: My wife wants to get a divorce but I do not. I have tried earnestly for marriage counseling and to try to mend our marriage. She is set on divorce.

Does it take two consenting parties to get a divorce in Missouri? If a divorce does go through, she makes a lot more money than I do so would I be entitled to maintenance from her?



I am sorry that your marriage is irretrievably broken. I encourage you to find a good, solid support system, including trusty family members, a counselor (if preferred) and a lawyer, to help you navigate the divorce process. Unfortunately, in all states either spouse can file for divorce. That means, your spouse can file, and you do not have to agree to the divorce. Your support system can help you cope with that fact.

Whether you will be entitled to support depends on all of the facts in your marriage, your current situations, your expected future situations, and the laws in Missouri. In general and in most states, a spouse will not be entitled to support unless he or she needs it, considering respective incomes, expenses, earning capacities, health, medical needs, marital standard of living, and shares of debt assumed. That your wife earns considerably more than you is a fact in your favor, but only one to consider.

Keep in mind that I am a Michigan attorney and cannot give you detailed advice about the laws in Missouri. You should not rely on this answer as establishing an attorney-client relationship, and you should contact an attorney in your area immediately if you need additional information or legal representation, as most parties in child support cases do. Cordell & Cordell, P.C., has many attorneys located in Missouri.


Jennifer M. Paine is an Associate Attorney in the Detroit, Michigan office of Cordell & Cordell P.C. She is licensed to practice in Michigan, and has been admitted pro hac vice in Illinois, Ohio, and the United States Court of Federal Claims. Ms. Paine received her BA in English and Mathematics from Albion College and graduated Summa Cum Laude. She received her Juris Doctorate from MSU College of Law and graduated Summa Cum Laude.

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