While infidelity of a spouse during marriage is often the reason that the other spouse decides to file for a divorce, it is not always considered as a factor in the ensuing legal proceedings. The role that infidelity plays depends upon the laws of the state that has jurisdiction over the matter. Adultery is considered as a cause for a divorce in a number of states, but many states including Florida have abolished fault as a ground for divorce.
In no-fault states a spouse seeking a divorce has no obligation to prove that the other spouse did anything wrong. However, if the unfaithful behavior of a spouse has an effect on the well-being of a couple’s children, it will often be taken into account in child custody decisions where the judge is obligated to consider the best interests of the children. It can also be a factor in property division orders if it can be shown that the unfaithful spouse has intentionally dissipated marital assets.
When a spouse has been unfaithful, the wronged spouse should consider the effect filing for divorce would have on their children. Taking some time for healing before moving forward with any divorce proceedings may make it possible to make the divorce take place in a more harmonious fashion.
A person who is contemplating adivorce for whatever reason may wish to speak with an attorney who has experience in family law and divorce matters. The attorney may be able to help negotiate and prepare agreements relating to property division and spousal support. If there are children involved, the attorney may be able to provide advice on child custody and support arrangements.
Source: Huffington Post, “Divorce Confidential: A Cheating Heart and Its Role in Divorce“, Caroline Choi, October 01, 2013