How Does Adultery Impact a Massachusetts Divorce?

When someone’s spouse commits adultery, they often wonder whether they should cite fault grounds or no-fault grounds when it comes to their divorce. Read on to learn more about adultery and how it may impact a Massachusetts divorce.

Do I Have to Cite Fault Grounds if my Spouse Committed Adultery?

It is important to know that Massachusetts is a no-fault state. This means that you can file for divorce, citing an irretrievable breakdown of the marriage. Fault-grounds, on the other hand, can be cited when a spouse partakes in marital misconduct, which can include adultery. Many people assume that if their spouse committed adultery, they should cite fault grounds for their divorce. Often, this is not the case. Citing fault grounds can lead to a much more public and lengthy divorce process. This is because fault grounds may require proof, and they can also become public record. To avoid this, many couples choose to cite no-fault grounds, or partake in alternate methods of divorce, including mediation, arbitration, or collaborative divorce. That being said, all couples are different and will go through a different divorce process. Contact an experienced attorney to determine the option that is best for you.

Can Citing Fault Grounds Impact the Outcome of my Divorce?

The outcome of a divorce is dependent upon a number of things. Some factors that may impact this are the length of the marriage, the circumstances regarding the end of the marriage, and more. The following are some ways adultery may impact a Massachusetts divorce:

  • Division of Assets: Generally speaking, adultery will not affect who gets what marital assets in the equitable distribution process.
  • Child Custody and Child Support: Child custody and child support, generally, will not be affected by adultery, unless your spouse endangered your child while committing the act of adultery, in which case your child custody agreement may reflect this. Child support may be impacted by child custody.
  • Alimony: In certain cases, alimony may be impacted by adultery. If you are financially dependent, your spouse may be ordered to pay more alimony, however, this strongly depends on all other circumstances of your case.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding adultery and how it could affect your Massachusetts divorce, contact our firm today. We are here to advocate for you and walk you through the process each step of the way. Reach out to speak with an experienced and dedicated attorney.

Contact our Firm

For over 30 years, The Law Offices of Cynthia L. Hanley, P.C. has provided quality legal support and representation for clients in Bristol County and all of Massachusetts. Our firm’s experience eases the stress of clients while providing the legal services they deserve. If you need help through a contested divorce, contact The Law Offices of Cynthia L. Hanley, P.C. for a consultation today.