No Abandonment Relief in Mississippi
The Mississippi Senate proposed a bill that would change Mississippi’s grounds for divorce as pertains to cases of abuse and abandonment. It was argued that under present Mississippi law, the abandonment statute serves to benefit an abusive spouse who stays in the home. The party who had been abused and decided to exit the home was left in a compromised position of not having abandonment as a grounds for divorce. This created situations where abusive husbands had the upper hand because they were able to claim they were abandoned and ultimately would be granted a divorce on those grounds.
Senate Bill 2652 would have given the fleeing spouse grounds for divorce if they had been away from an abusive situation for five years or longer. Supporters of the new bill pointed out that when the abusive spouse will not agree to a divorce, it was too difficult for the other party to obtain one after they moved out of the home. Even though the bill had passed in the Senate, it was ultimately defeated with a vote of 81 to 39.