The Most Common Reasons for Divorce in the US

In the US, divorce is fairly common. The process may seem simple enough, but from a legal point of view, it’s far from straightforward.

There comes a time in a marriage when divorce becomes inevitable and the only healthy solution for everyone involved. Aside from the fact that it’s a stressful experience, divorce can be complex to initiate. Divorce can arise for various reasons.

What Are Common Reasons for Divorce in the US?


Getting a divorce nowadays may seem fairly simple and relatively easy. Despite the apparent ease, this process has been long in the making. The body of law governing this family law comes from a long tradition and has been refined and improved over time.

There are many different reasons individuals divorce in the US. It’s usually enough to cite irreconcilable differences, but the individuals involved in the process might need to elaborate on the other grounds for divorce if the situation is more complicated and depending on which state they reside in.

To learn more about some of the most common ones, we enlisted the help of family law experts at JWB Family Law.

Here’s what they said:

1. Incompatibility

Incompatibility can be a challenging issue in a marriage because it may not be immediately apparent. It can manifest in many different ways, such as differences in interests, hobbies, goals, and even in how couples prefer to spend their free time.

When two people are not compatible, they may find it difficult to have meaningful conversations or connect on an emotional level. They may feel like they are constantly at odds with each other and unable to find common ground.

It can also be related to fundamental values, such as religious beliefs, political views, or attitudes toward family and children. For example, if one partner is religious and the other is not, it can create tension and conflict in the relationship.

Similarly, if one partner wants children and the other does not, it can be a source of stress and eventually lead to divorce.

2. Physical or Emotional Abuse

A much more serious problem that could be a deciding factor for the termination of a marriage is abuse or violence.

Unfortunately, while the divorce process is relatively straightforward, the abuse can sometimes be difficult to prove. It usually requires either an admission from the abuser or a witness that can attest to what happened.

When it comes to physical violence, the victim of abuse may have bruises or other injuries, which certainly bolster the case, but may not always be enough.


A victim of domestic violence should seek a restraining order and start working with an attorney as soon as possible. On the other hand, emotional abuse might be trickier to litigate, but with the right attorney, it can be proven.

Read also: Understanding Solicitors and Their Role in Depth

3. Abandonment

Abandonment is another serious problem that could lead to divorce. It usually happens when one spouse leaves the home without any warning or indication that they intend to return.

Abandonment is often one of the reasons for divorce because it leaves the other spouse without any support, both emotionally and financially.

This could be a case where one spouse left for an extended period of time without any contact or a case where one partner simply disappeared without a trace. In both cases, the remaining partner can decide to terminate the marriage.

4. Infidelity

Infidelity is one of the most common reasons for divorce. Cheating can have a devastating impact on a marriage, leading to feelings of betrayal, anger, and mistrust.

When one spouse cheats, the other may feel like they can never trust them again, making it difficult to continue the relationship. While infidelity can be a difficult issue to work through, some couples choose to seek counseling or therapy to try to repair their relationship.

5. Financial Problems

Money troubles are often cited as a reason for divorce, but they don’t always have to be. In many cases, financial problems can be resolved with the help of a financial planner or counselor. However, if the financial problems are severe enough, they can lead to divorce.

This is often the case when one spouse is severely in debt or is not contributing to the household finances. It can also happen when one spouse is spending excessively, without any regard for the family’s financial stability.



There are plenty of valid reasons to obtain a divorce if you are no longer satisfied with your life together. However, most family law attorneys will tell you to first take a closer look at your life and relationship and perhaps consider mending the marriage. Finding a reputable attorney is a good start if that is not possible.

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