Pregnant women can’t get divorced in Missouri

Did you know that? I didn’t know that.

The Riverfront Times takes a look at a law that would be weird in most states, but not Missouri:

December 2020 was a turbulent month for Danielle Drake, 32, of Lake of the Ozarks. On December 1, her husband said he was going out with a friend, but he lied. He was actually having an affair. She filed for a divorce less than a week later, on December 7.

Then, not long before Christmas, Drake found out she was pregnant.

Drake knew immediately she had to file a second, amended petition for divorce. She also knew the impact her pregnancy would have on the divorce proceedings. Drake, who earned a law degree from University of Missouri Kansas City has been practicing family law for two years, was well aware that in Missouri, women who are pregnant can’t get a divorce.

Missouri law states that a petition for divorce must provide eight pieces of information, things like the residence of each party, the date of separation, and, notably, “whether the wife is pregnant.” If the answer is yes, Drake says, “What that practically does is put your case on hold.”

There is a lot of disagreement online about whether pregnant Missouri women can get divorced. The RFT spoke to multiple lawyers who handle divorce proceedings and they all agreed that in Missouri a divorce can’t be finalized if either the petitioner (the person who files for divorce) or the respondent (the other party in the divorce) is pregnant.

This both shocks me and yet it does not shock me at all.

Shocks me because it’s 2022 in America, for God’s sake.

Does not shock me because, well, Missouri.

A state I will not visit nor do business with until the urban residents of Missouri get off their asses and take back their state government from the yahoos in places like Lake of the Ozarks.

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