Like every state, Alaska’s divorce laws allow married couples to file for dissolution without citing a specific cause. This approach is typically the fastest and easiest way to dissolve a marriage. However, in some cases, an attorney can recommend pursuing a fault divorce, which impacts the terms of your separation agreement. Below is an overview of the differences between these types of marriage terminations.

What Is a No-Fault Divorce?

In Alaska, couples can ask for a divorce based on “incompatibility of temperament,” which means that the relationship is permanently broken and cannot be repaired. Courts won’t ask either party for evidence that reconciliation is impossible and typically grant a dissolution even if one of the spouses doesn’t want to separate.

divorce law

No-fault divorces are generally less expensive and faster because they don’t require the parties to argue their case. Couples who can settle questions regarding property division, child custody, and alimony between themselves can only need to appear in court once.

What Is a Fault Divorce?

Alaskan couples can also cite reasons for their divorce, including adultery, the conviction of a felony, desertion of the marriage for at least one year, or substance abuse. Under Alaska divorce law, violence and harmful behavior are also grounds for terminating a divorce.

Depending on your situation, the court can consider the other spouse’s conduct when making property division and child custody decisions. Filing for a fault divorce can make the process more stressful, expensive, and time-consuming. However, you might achieve a better outcome with this approach if your partner’s past behavior was especially egregious.

What Are the Residency Requirements for Divorce in Alaska?

In Alaska, divorcing couples must show that they have lived in the state for six consecutive months during the previous six years. The court can also have jurisdiction if either spouse is a current state resident and intends to stay for an extended period. However, they cannot have jurisdiction over real estate or other property in other states.


Dissolving a marriage is emotionally stressful and legally confusing, but the advice of a skilled attorney can help you achieve the best possible outcome. Darryl L. Jones, Attorney at Law, has served clients throughout Anchorage and Palmer for over 30 years, providing detailed legal advice tailored to your unique situation. To speak with a divorce law attorney in Anchorage, call (907) 278-1212. Dial (907) 746-9851 to schedule a consultation at their office in Palmer.