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Can Infidelity Affect The Outcome Of A New Jersey Divorce Case?

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According to research, infidelity is one of the major contributors to divorce in America. Discovering a spouse’s adultery is never an easy thing. In most cases, people chose to end their marriage after discovering their spouse’s infidelity. If you just discovered that your spouse has been cheating on you, or that your spouse just found out that you have been cheating on him or her and are about to get a divorce, you might be asking yourself some questions. For instance, you might be asking yourself, “can infidelity affect the outcome of a New Jersey divorce case?”

No-Fault and Fault Divorce in New Jersey

New Jersey allows individuals to file either no-fault or fault divorce.

A no-fault divorce is whereby the spouse filing for divorce avoids pointing fingers at the other spouse. Therefore, in the case of infidelity, a no-fault divorce would be that one whereby the filing spouse does not mention in the divorce petition his or her spouse’s infidelity.

On the other hand, a fault divorce is whereby the filing spouse points out to the court that his or her spouse is responsible for the divorce. In the case of infidelity, a fault divorce would be that one whereby the filing spouse points out to the court that his or her spouse committed adultery, and the cheating is the reason for divorce.

It is important to note that, when it comes to infidelity, if a person decides to file a fault divorce, he or she must prove infidelity on the part of his or her spouse and, usually, the person he or she committed adultery with is named in the complaint for divorce. Merely telling the court that adultery is the reason for the divorce is not enough.

Proving infidelity can be complex; therefore, in most cases, it is usually better for people not to cite adultery as grounds for their divorce. Nevertheless, if you feel that you must file a fault divorce, talking to a qualified attorney before filing would be a good idea.

When a person finds out that his or her partner has been unfaithful, he or she might want to seek revenge. A hurt spouse might assume that filing a fault divorce will allow him or her to get back at a cheating partner. It would help for you to know that things don’t work like that in New Jersey.

Adultery and Alimony

In New Jersey, adultery, on its own, cannot affect alimony decisions in divorce cases. Infidelity is most likely to influence alimony decisions if an additional bad behavior related to the adultery negatively affected a couple’s economic situation. For example, if the spouse who had an adulterous affair used substantial marital assets to sustain the affair, a New Jersey court might consider that when awarding alimony.

Adultery and Property Division

Again, the mere fact that a person committed adultery cannot impact property division in a New Jersey divorce case. Nonetheless, if a spouse wasted marital property on an extramarital affair such as paying for an apartment where the paramour lived, the court might consider that when making property division decisions. If such an act is considered, an innocent spouse might end up receiving more than the cheating spouse.

Adultery and Child Custody

Adultery rarely affects child custody decisions in New Jersey. Nonetheless, if the lover of the unfaithful spouse poses a threat to a child or children, the cheating parent’s custody or visitation rights might suffer.

Reach Out to Citizen Soldier Law for Help Today

If you need help with your divorce case, contact the supportive New Jersey divorce lawyers at Citizen Soldier Law today to schedule a consultation.

Resource:

ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4012696/

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