(A) crim. law. An offence which consists in the abandonment of the public service, in the army or navy, without leave. 2. The Act of March 16, 1802, s. 19, enacts, that if any non-commissioned officer, musician, or private, shall desert the service of the United States, he shall, in addition to the penalties mentioned in the rules and articles of war, be liable to serve for and during such period as shall, with the time he may have served previous to his desertion, amount to the full term of his enlistment; and such soldier shall and may be tried by a court-martial, and punished, although the term of his enlistment may have elapsed previous to his being apprehended or tried. 3. By the articles of war, it is enacted, that any non-commissioned officer or soldier who shall, without leave from his commanding officer, absent himself from his troop, company, or detachment, shall, upon being convicted thereof, be punished, according to the nature of his offence, at the discretion of a court-martial. Art. 21. 4. By the articles for the government of the navy, art. 16, it is enacted, that if any person in the navy shall desert to an enemy, or rebel, he shall suffer death; and by art. 17, if any person in the navy shall desert, or shall entice others to desert, he shall suffer death, or such other punishment as a court-martial shall adjudge. (B) tort and in divorce law. The act by which a man abandons his wife and children, or either of them. 2. On proof of desertion, the courts possess the power to grant the Wife, or such children as have been deserted, alimony. NOTE: In states that require a fault divorce there is usually a statutory period of time which, if a spouse stays away from the home and without contact, will be sufficient grounds to allow the other spouse to file for abandonment.
Law Dictionary – Alternative Legal Definition
The act by which a person abandons and forsakes, without justification, or unauthorized, a station or condition of public or social life, renouncing Its responsibilities and evading its duties.
In matrimonial and divorce law. An actual abandonment or breaking off of matrimonial cohabitation, by either of the parties, and a renouncing or refusal of the duties and obligations of the relation, with an intent to abandon or forsake entirely and not to return to or resume marital relations, occurring without legal justification either in the consent or the wrongful conduct Of the other party. State v. Baker, 112 La. 801, 36 South. 7rt3; Bailey v. Bailey, 21 Grat (Va.) 47; Ingersoll v. Ingersoll, 49 Pa. 250, 88 Am. Dec. 500; Droege v. Droege, 55 Mo. App. 482; Barnett v. Bnrnett, 27 Ind. App. 466, 61 N. E. 737; Williams v. Williams, 130 N. Y. 193, 29 N. E. 96, 14 L. R. A. 220, 27 Am. St Rep. 517; Magrath v. Magrath, 103 Mass. 579, 4 Am. Rep. 579; Cass v. Cass, 31 N. J. Eq. 026 ; Ogilvie v. Ogllvie, 37 Or. 171, 61 Pac. 627; Tirrell v. Tirrell, 72 Conn. 567, 45 Atl. 153, 47 I R. A. 750; State v. Weber, 48 Mo. App. 504.
In military law. An offense which consists in the abandonment of his post and duties by a person commissioned or enlisted in the army or navy,.without leave and with the intention not to .return. Holllngsworth v. Shaw, 19 Ohio St 432, 2 Am. Rep. 411;
In re Sutherland (D. C.) 53 Fed; 551. There is a difference between desertion and simple “absence without leave ;’ In order to constitute the former, there must be an intention not to return to the service. Hanson v. South Scituate, 115 Mass. 336.
In maritime law. The act by which a seaman deserts and abandons a ship or vessel, in which he had engaged to perform a voyage, before the expiration of his time, and without leave. By desertion, in the maritime law, is meant not a mere unauthorized absence from the ship without leave, but an unauthorized absence, from the ship, with an intention not to return to her service, or, as it is often expressed, animo non revertendi; that is, , with an Intention to desert Coffin v. Jenkins, 3 Story, 108, Fed. Cas. No. 2,948; The Union (D. C.) 20 Fed. 639; The Mary .C. Conery (D. C.) 9 Fed. 223; The George, 10 Fed. Cas. 204.