It is disappointing, but possible, for a court to decline a divorce petition. Below are some of the cases in which that might happen.
You Don't Meet the Residency Requirement
Most states have residency requirements that require you to have lived in a state for some time before filing for a divorce. The residency requirement varies by state; it can be as short as a couple of months or as long as one year. Only one of you has to meet the residency requirement. Therefore, if you file your divorce in Texas after living in the state for three months, the court will reject your application because the residency requirement in Texas is six months.
You Filed In the Wrong Court
You don't just file your divorce in any court even if you meet the residency requirements of the court. You must file your divorce in a civil court in the county where either you or your partner has resided in the last few months. This requirement is in place to ensure fair distribution of divorce cases in different courts. Otherwise, some courts would be overwhelmed with cases, while others would have light loads.
Your 'Marriage' Is Invalid
A divorce is only granted to couples who are legally married. You cannot get divorced if your relationship doesn't meet the legal threshold for marriage. For example, your marriage is not valid if your partner was married to another person all the time you were married. Your marriage is also not valid if at least one of you is underage (according to the state's legal age for marriage).
You Haven't Completed the Waiting Period
Some states require a separation period before the divorce. For example, both Louisiana and Montana require a 180-day waiting period before a couple can file for divorce. Therefore, if you file for divorce after a couple of months of separation in Montana, the court won't grant you a divorce.
You Fail To Prove Grounds
If you want a fault-divorce, then you have to prove the grounds for your divorce before the court grants it. For example, if you are claiming desertion, you have to prove that your spouse was not around for the period specified by the laws of your state. Your spouse might challenge your assertions, and if the court agrees, it won't grant your divorce.
As you can see, you are not guaranteed a divorce decree just because you have submitted your filing. The best way to ensure this won't happen is to consult a divorce lawyer before submitting your divorce petition. In case the court has rejected your petition, you can still consult a divorce attorney on the adjustments you need to make before your divorce can proceed.