As a former New Yorker who is licensed to practice law in New York (and New Jersey) as well as Florida, the dramatic difference between “no-fault divorce”, as practiced in Florida (and most of the US), and “fault grounded divorce”, as practiced in New York, really “hits home” with my practice.
An article in today’s New York Times about divorce, New York-style, just may prompt those facing divorce in Florida to breathe a sigh of relief that they are here.
While the cases detailed are extreme, there is no question that both the requirement of fault and the prominence of fault in all aspects of the divorce process does fan the flames and provoke heightened hostilities and nastiness in most cases.
On the other hand, fault is not completely eliminated from divorce in so-called “no fault” states, but it isn’t a required element to get a divorce. It may be a consideration in property division and alimony.
Ultimately though, it is the parties (and their attorneys), more than the applicable law, which determines how great a role fault and negative feelings will play in their divorces.
The linked article should probably be required reading for every party thinking about divorce.