Gross Neglect Law & Legal Definition


In the context of divorce law, gross neglect refers to a willful failure to perform a marital obligation. Gross neglect of duty refers to an omission of a legal duty. Precise definitions vary by state.

For example, under Ohio law, a husband and wife owe each other obligations of mutual respect, fidelity, and support. Case law has interpreted the term to include, among others, a substantial failure to provide financial support when able to do so, failing to support each other in a time of great emotional distress caused by the death of their child, and lack of sexual relations accompanied by other aggravating factors. However, the term gross neglect of duty is incapable of any concrete definition which can be applied to all cases. Its application depends upon the circumstances of the particular case.