Attorney at Law

What Does it Mean to Establish Grounds?

Establishing grounds means providing reasons that serve as a basis for demanding legal relief or any other similar legal processes. In theory, establishing grounds in law is achieved by presenting the basis of justification for legal action, such as divorce. The requirement to establish grounds can be found in most realms of law in the United States.

This process is predominant in a variety of legal fields, especially in family law and criminal law. Most courts require that one establishes grounds before beginning any type of legal action.

Key Takeaways

  • Establish grounds refers to providing the reasons sufficient in law as a basis to justify legal relief.
  • It is commonly used in a variety of legal fields, including divorce law, custody law, and criminal law. 
  • One is required to establish grounds in divorce, but he or she can opt for a no-fault divorce.

Establishing Grounds in Law

  1. Divorce Law

One of the first steps when it comes to filing for a divorce is establishing grounds. Before the court can begin dividing marital property and handling custody arrangements, the spouse filing for divorce must establish grounds. In all US states, couples have the option to file a no-fault divorce, which means there were no specific grounds or no individual party at fault for the divorce. However, in cases of a fault divorce, the spouse must provide the legal reasons that led him or her to file for divorce. Some typical grounds for divorce include adultery, cruelty, long-term abandonment and incarceration. 

  1. Custody Law

In order for a court to grant sole custody to a spouse, that spouse must establish legal grounds in support of his or her case. Almost all US states require the court to consider the best interests of the child before granting sole custody to a parent. There are several legal reasons, or grounds, that fall under this category. Sole custody may be awarded if the other parent has a history of abuse, neglect, substance abuse or mental illness.

  1. Criminal Law

Establishing grounds takes on a slightly different meaning in criminal law. In these cases, one typically must prove there is reasonable grounds before performing a variety of legal actions such as charging someone with a crime. According to Law Insider, reasonable grounds is “information that establishes enough accurate facts to give a trained law enforcement or criminal investigative agency officer reasonable basis to believe that a definable criminal offense is, has been, or may be committed.

Bottom Line

In a general sense, establishing grounds can be considered one of the first steps in starting any legal process. Whether you are faced with a fault divorce or pressing criminal charges against another person, establishing grounds is a crucial yet tricky component. It is important to make sure you have the proper reasoning to achieve legal relief while building your case. A skilled attorney can help you establish grounds, build your case and guide you through every step of the legal process.

Ask a Lawyer

Ask your own question and get advice from expert attorneys
Ask Question

Featured Criminal Defense Lawyers

Fraiberg & Pernie

7 years in practice
Criminal Defense, DUI Law, Real Estate Law
View Profile

Brandon White Law P.C.

9 years in practice
Auto Accidents, Criminal Defense, DUI Law, Personal Injury, Traffic Ticket
View Profile

Millar Law, P.L.L.C.

6 years in practice
Criminal Defense, DUI Law
View Profile

Law Office of Edwin Burnett

36 years in practice
Copyright, Intellectual Property
View Profile

Aldrich & Brunot, LLC

9 years in practice
Auto Accidents, Personal Injury
View Profile

Horn Wright, LLP

28 years in practice
Employment Law, Personal Injury, Sexual Assault
View Profile


Are you looking for an attorney? Do you have questions about a legal case you are facing? Contact us now and we will put you in touch with a lawyer for free.

Related Posts

Identity Theft
Lia Kopin-GreenNovember 19, 2023
Lia Kopin-GreenMarch 29, 2022
Criminal Law
Daisy RogozinskyJuly 13, 2022
Attorney At Law is changing how clients connect with lawyers. By providing an innovative platform to lawyers who want to expand their practice’s reach, AAL is bringing law practices into the future.
6142 Innovation Way
Carlsbad, California 92009
Some of the content of this website may be considered attorney advertising under the rules of certain jurisdictions. The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute an attorney-client relationship.
crossmenuchevron-upchevron-down linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram