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Louisiana Divorce Law on Reconciliation

Louisiana law on reconciliation as it affects a 102 or 103 divorce can be found in Article 104 of the Louisiana Civil Code. That article states:

La. C. C. Art. 104. Reconciliation

The cause of action for divorce is extinguished by the reconciliation of the parties.

As you may know, a 102 divorce is filed by those parties who have not been physically separated for more than 180 days (or 365 days if they have one of more minor children of the marriage). If the couple reconciles during this waiting period, after the petition for divorce has been filed, then the cause of action for divorce is interrupted. That means that the waiting period will stop running and  for the parties to obtain a divorce, then the waiting period must begin again. In other words, before the trial judge can grant the parties a divorce, they must live separate and apart continuously for another 180 or 365 days from the service of the initial divorce & family law attorney petition (or execution of the waiver of service). A reconciliation would also interrupt a 103 divorce.

Reconciliation is a method for extinguishing a cause of action for divorce. However, what reconciliation means is often debated by the parties.  In order for reconciliation to be found to exist, there must be an intent to reconcile or a meeting of the minds between the parties. Occasional sexual encounters, going out together, going on a vacation together, or interacting in a sociable manner does not constitute a reconciliation. Reconciliation occurs when there is a mutual intent to reestablish the marital relationship on a permanent basis.

Here is an example of a reconciliation. In Orihuela v. Orihuela, 184 So. 3d 182 (La. Ct. App. 5th Cir. 2015), a reconciliation occurred  where the husband and wife had numerous lunches and dinners together, took trips together, spent  nights at each other’s houses, engaged in sexual relations, celebrated their wedding anniversary, gave each other gifts, sent text messages concerning reconciliation, and discussed reconciliation.


This information has been provided for informational purposes only and is not intended and should not be construed to constitute legal advice. Please consult your attorney in connection with any specific situation under federal and/or Louisiana law and the applicable state or local laws that may impose additional obligations on you and/or your family member. © 2019 Published  April 26, 2019.

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