What impact does an extramarital affair have on my Pennsylvania divorce?

By law in Pennsylvania, an affair (known as “marital misconduct”) cannot be considered when dealing with divorce lawyers or when the court divides your marital property. 23 Pa. C.S. §3502 states “Upon the request of either party in an action for divorce or annulment, the court shall equitably divide, distribute or assign, in kind or otherwise, the marital property between the parties without regard to marital misconduct in such percentages and in such manner as the court deems just after considering all relevant factors.” (emphasis added)

However, that isn’t the end of the story. Marital misconduct during the marriage is a factor considered by the court in determining if Alimony is proper in a given case. 23 Pa. C.S. §3701. Additionally, while the marital misconduct itself may not be considered, the misconduct of one or both of the spouses can have an effect on other factors that the court must consider. Typically the use of a divorce mediator and the collaborative practice is a more difficult process when an affair is involved and for this reason courts may be used.

For more information on this topic or any other topic related to issues of divorce, custody, support or family law in general, please contact Tim Colgan or call (800) 615-0115.

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