Adultery is the most commonly pled ground for a fault-based divorce. While it may be common to include adultery in your pleadings, it is rare that a court will actually grant a divorce on the basis of adultery. This is because Texas is a “no-fault” divorce state. Even when the adulterous spouse admits to an affair in court, many judges are reluctant the grant a divorce based on adultery, especially when children are involved.
So why would one claim adultery in a divorce proceeding? While adultery may not be the grounds for why a divorce is granted, it can have an impact on the division of your property and on custody decisions. Engaging in a relationship after separating from your spouse can even be considered adultery if it takes place prior to your divorce being finalized.
The primary impact of adultery in a divorce proceeding is found on the division of property. There is no requirement that your property be divided evenly, and Texas judges have broad discretion in determining what they believe to be a “just and right” division of your estate.
The effective presentation of an adultery claim can result in the non-adulterous spouse receiving a disproportionate division of the community estate. If the adulterous spouse made expenditures during the affair, such as vacations, hotel rooms, or extravagant gifts, then this can give rise to a waste of assets claim.
Regardless of which side you find yourself on for the adultery claims, it is important to have an experienced divorce lawyer representing your property interests.
Claims of adultery can also impact child custody decisions. If the adulterous spouse introduces your children to their paramour or sneaks this person in the home while the children are present, it can have detrimental consequences on custody decisions.
It is also common that while divorce proceedings are pending that the court will order injunctions to keep the children away from the adulterous relationship, such as by not allowing your spouse to have anyone they are in a romantic relationship with stay the night while the children are present.
Are you in an adulterous relationship? If you are, and you want to file for divorce, your best option is to hire an experienced adultery lawyer near you.
Proving a claim for adultery can be difficult as speculation and innuendos are generally insufficient. The Southlake adultery lawyers at Mims Ballew Hollingsworth have extensive experience in conducting discovery and working with investigators to effectively present adultery claims.
Contact us today to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced Southlake adultery lawyer.