Adultery In Pennsylvania Divorce Law
Pennsylvania law recognizes adultery as a fault ground for divorce. The cheating spouse is at fault, due to his or her adulterous behavior, for the decision to divorce. When a divorce involves adultery, it can affect spousal support and alimony. Yet, it is not likely to impact custody, visitation, child support or even marital property distribution.
What Constitutes Adultery in Pennsylvania Divorce Law?
To fully understand Pennsylvania adultery laws, we must first understand what defines adultery. Adultery is when a married person is engaging in sexual relations with a person other than their spouse. If adultery is proven, the court will consider it when deciding whether to award spousal support or alimony to the cheating spouse.
Now that we understand what adultery is and how it impacts divorce, it’s important to also know how Pennsylvania law views adultery. Read on to learn more.
Is Adultery A Crime In Pennsylvania?
Cheating in Pennsylvania is not a crime. But, there are many other real and significant ramifications that make adultery as serious as a crime. Adultery still counts as a civil matter for Pennsylvania divorce courts, and it is a heavily weighed factor in the divorce proceeding.
Does adultery affect spousal support in PA?
When adultery is the fault ground for divorce, it won’t affect the share the cheating spouse receives of the couple’s marital assets but could mean less or no alimony.
Can adultery impact child custody and child support?
While it is rare that adultery would impact child custody, it is possible. For example, if a spouse’s adulterous actions showed neglect or harm for a child. This behavior can include leaving them unattended or inadequately cared for. In such a case, the court may see this as cause for concern over the care for the child.
In order for the court to consider adultery as the fault ground for a divorce, the innocent spouse has to prove the the cheating. Such proof might include pictures, text, social media messages or phone call records. It can also include receipts for things like travel, dates and gifts, or even testimony from the adulterous partner.
A critical detail is that adultery will not hold up in the court as a ground for divorce if the so-called innocent spouse also committed adultery. Adultery won’t stand either if the innocent spouse forgave the cheating by reconciling with the guilty spouse.
Help with Adultery and Divorce in Pennsylvania
If you or someone you know is considering filing for divorce with adultery as the reason for doing so, it’s important to get professional legal advice from an experienced divorce attorney who understands Pennsylvania divorce law.
By seeking advice early, you will be in the best position to protect your rights and assets. With and experienced family lawyer you can work toward a swift and fair outcome. Speaking with a trusted family lawyer will help protect your children and your custody rights. If you have a question about adultery and divorce, please contact us today at (717) 790-2048 !