Mississippi Divorce Attorney Discusses Habitual Drunkenness as Grounds for Divorce

Mississippi recognizes a number of different, fault-based grounds for divorce. Some of these grounds are more frequently cited in divorce complaints than others are, but it is important that couples be aware of them in case they do pertain to your marriage. Habitual drunkenness is one such infrequently cited grounds for divorce.

It is no secret that many people enjoy drinking alcohol, and some people enjoy alcohol frequently, either in the company of their spouse or with friends. There is a difference, though, between recreational use of alcohol and the type of habitual drunkenness that the state of Mississippi had in mind when it listed it as a grounds for divorce.

Since habitual drunkenness is not a frequently used grounds for divorce, there is not a great deal of case law describing instances where a court has found that it was in fact an issue and a divorce should be granted because of it. Mississippi residents who cite habitual drunkenness as the grounds upon which their divorce should be granted must be prepared to present evidence that would support a conclusion that the defendant was frequently or habitually drunk, and also that the drunkenness affected the marriage and was an ongoing issue at the time of the divorce trial.

From the above description of the elements of a successful habitual drunkenness divorce claim, you can see that the amount and frequency of alcohol consumption are only part of the picture. The effect of the alcohol on the behavior of the defendant spouse is very important, and is essential to a successful claim. It is possible for a defendant to drink every day without the drinking having an impact on the marriage, if the defendant acted like their usual self even after consuming quite a bit of alcohol. In contrast, even someone who drinks a few nights every week and then acts in an abusive and violent manner at home would be found to be habitually drunk in a way that affects the marriage.

Since habitual drunkenness has a few requirements, some people may be disappointed to learn that the divorce case that they would like to file is not likely to succeed on those grounds. Fortunately, there are many other statutorily recognized grounds for divorce which can be used in situations where alcohol abuse creates marital problems even without being habitual. For example, if someone drinks a couple of times a month and physically abuses their spouse every time that they do it, the spouse may be able to cite cruel and inhuman treatment as a grounds for divorce depending upon what other behaviors the person engages in and how the victim has been affected.

Whether your divorce is based upon habitual drunkenness or some other grounds for divorce, it is important that you seek assistance from a knowledgeable Mississippi Divorce Attorney. To learn more about how Jackson area divorce attorney Matthew S. Poole can help you, call our office today, at (601) 573-7429 to schedule your free initial consultation.


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Mississippi Divorce Attorney Discusses Habitual Drunkenness as Grounds for Divorce
Mississippi Divorce Attorney explains how habitual drunkenness can form the grounds for a Mississippi divorce.