Can My Spouse Prevent Our Divorce?

If you’re ready to get divorced, it may have been a long time coming. When you file the paperwork, it could be a huge relief, but what if your spouse tries to stop the divorce altogether? Is that even possible? It depends.

In a no-fault divorce, a spouse can object all he or she wants and the judge can still grant the divorce. In a fault divorce, the spouse can object to the divorce, providing proof that he or she is not at fault for the divorce. There are four other defenses a spouse might use to prevent a divorce.


Collusion is when the couple works together to pretend they have been separated for a certain period of time. In some states, a certain period of time is required before a divorce can be granted. If the couple wants to speed up the process, they might participate in collusion. This can be used to prevent a divorce, however, when one spouse decides he or she actually wants to stay in the marriage. That spouse would simply inform the judge that the couple was colluding against the court and the judge would possibly put the proceedings on hold.


Condonation is when one spouse approves of the other spouse’s behavior or actions. For example, if a wife encouraged her husband to meet up with a girlfriend on the weekends, then tried to use adultery as grounds for divorce, the husband could claim that the wife condoned his behavior. Her condonation of his actions could prevent the divorce.


Connivance is when one spouse creates a situation for the other spouse to fail so he or she can use it as grounds for divorce. For example, a wife who knows her husband has feelings for another woman could invite the other woman over for the weekend, then leave the house for a couple of days. If that wife then claimed her husband committed adultery, he could claim that she connived the situation.


Provocation is when one spouse provokes a certain behavior in the other spouse. For example, a husband might irritate his wife to the point that she snaps and acts out physically. He could then seek a divorce on the grounds of domestic abuse or violence. In an effort to stop the divorce, the wife could claim that he provoked the situation.

Getting a Lawyer on Your Side

If you want to get divorced, but your spouse is putting up a fight, it might help to get a divorce lawyer involved. There are certain grounds to prevent a divorce, but a lawyer can help you work around those issues. Contact a family lawyer today so you have a professional on your side.