Desertion Law and Legal Definition

Desertion is the willful abandonment of a person's duties, services or obligations, especially to military service or to a spouse or family. The five ingredients of spousal desertion in family law are cessation of cohabitation, intention to abandon, lapse of a statutory period, lack of consent from the abandoned spouse, and lack of spousal misconduct. On proof of desertion beyond doubt, the court grants the spouse or children as have been deserted.