Divorce Reform Bills Introduced in 2003


Part of the Divorce Reform Page, sponsored by Americans for Divorce Reform
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If you have heard of a bill but do not see it on here, please tell us anything you know about it! Texts and links for bills are also appreciated.

PASSED:

2003 Arkansas Covenant Marriage Amendments
-- [passed]

New Taiwanese law requires premarital classes

PROPOSED:

2003 Colorado divorce reform legislation
-- failed in committee, was similar to 2002 COLORADO DIVORCE LEGISLATION

Florida bills -- [article discussing plans for reforms. However, nothing has been introduced and the filing deadline for the 2003 session has passed.]

Illinois Marriage Counseling Bill [failed 3/18/03]

2003 Indiana Pre-divorce counseling bill -- [in committee as of 3/10/03]

2003 Indiana Waiting Period Bill -- [in committee as of 3/10/03]

2003 Indiana Covenant marriage bill -- [in committee as of 3/10/03]

2003 Indiana Marriage counselors bill -- [in committee as of 3/10/03]

2003 Louisiana Comprehensive Divorce Reform Bill emphasizing due process of law, mutual consent, and counseling.
Lengthens the waiting period for unilateral no-fault divorce to two years; requires counseling from state-licensed counselor before divorce. Allows divorce jurisdiction only if the separation or other grounds ocurred in the state, or the parties lived there together. Eliminates one statute allowing uncontested divorce "on the papers" without a hearing, but still appears to allow it by a default or summary judgment (though the official summary says it abolishes those, too). Clarifies that spouses in "separation from bed and board" cases can get all relief that people can in divorce cases, except divorce and remarriage. Requires notice and a hearing before a restraining order can be made. Reiterates spousal immunity from tort suits.

Montana SB 29: consider marital misconduct in divorces -- [indefinitely tabled in committee]

2003 New Hampshire HB 351 - 6 month waiting period/custody education program. (Establishes a 6-month waiting period before divorce for families with children. Unlike many waiting periods, the period is begun by filing a declaration of intent to separates -- it does not require the parties to stay separate, or to have already filed for divorce, both of which tend to hurt the chances for reconciliation and reconsideration of the divorce).-- [pending as of 3/10/03. Current status report]

New Hampshire bill requiring mutual consent for an incompatibility divorce with children
-- has been discussed, apparently not introduced as of 3/10/03

2003 New Mexico Mutual Consent/Counseling Divorce Bills

2003 Ohio Covenant Marriage Bill
-- [there were definite plans for one, but it is not on the legislature's web site yet].

2003 Oklahoma Mutual Consent / No Children Bill

Texas Covenant Marriage Bill, HB 1795 -- [pending as of 3/10/03]

2003 Utah Covenant Marriage Bill, HB 0213 -- [passed House, failed in Senate committee*]

Virginia Covenant Marriage Bills -- [passed House, died in Senate committee]

2003 West Virginia Covenant Marriage Bill -- [in committee as of 3/10/03]

2003 West Virginia Premarital Counseling Bill -- [in committee as of 3/10/03]

* From a message on the Smart Marriages Listserv:
UTAH COVENANT LEGISLATION NEAR MISS
Although the Utah House overwhelmingly passed the covenant marriage bill
(72-1-1), the Utah Senate narrowly voted it down yesterday (10-13-6). The
sponsor of the bill talked to most of the senators who were absent during
the vote, and believes the bill would have passed had their votes been cast.
He lined up a petition for a recall vote, but time ran out. He plans to
introduce the bill again next year and says the prospects for passage look good.

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Originally posted and maintained by Americans for Divorce Reform; now maintained by John Crouch. You can call me at (703) 528-6700 or e-mail me through my law office's web site.