As of October 1, 2023 Maryland will no longer have fault grounds for divorce. Instead we will only have these 3 grounds for divorce: (1) Mutual Consent; (2) Irreconcilable Differences; or (3) a 6 month separation, which may be under the same roof. This will hopefully streamline the process and reduce the amount of conflict between couples looking to divorce, who are essentially are being directed to just focus on how to execute the separation and not the why.
The filing process itself has also become much easier, as we now file everything online and since 2020 all of my scheduling conferences and uncontested hearings in Maryland have been via Zoom. Aside from experiencing a far more efficient court process, there is a significant cost savings to the clients. Given that in person meetings are rarely necessary anymore, I have also enjoyed reaching clients from a far greater range throughout Maryland and DC than ever before.
Personally, I believe these changes were all long overdue. While I have found it incredibly interesting to work with families in transition the past 25 years, watching them struggle to navigate the challenges of the court process has been difficult. I have always felt the more we can do to lighten their load, the better. Now my job in helping them get to the finish line is becoming far easier, and for this I am eternally grateful.
By Regina A. DeMeo, Esq.