1) Divorce: abandonment is grounds for divorce in most states. Grounds arise when one spouse physically leaves the other with no intent on returning. Usually, the minimum time allowed to claim abandonment is one year, but it changes from state to state. Some states also recognize constructive abandonment where one spouse refuses to financially support the other and/or engage in sexual intercourse without good reason.
Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary
To intentionally and permanently give up, surrender, leave, desert, or relinquish all interest, obligations, or ownership in a house, apartment, or other property (such as a patent), a right of way, or a spouse or children. The word is often used when a tenant has left his or her rental unit and the property inside and does not intend to come back. State landlord-tenant laws typically regulate how the landlord may deal with abandoned property left behind by the tenant. To abandon a child or spouse means to have no contact and give no support for an extended period of time.
Definition provided by Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary.
August 19, 2010, 5:10 pm