Adultery is one of the most common, and painful, reasons a spouse is found at fault in a divorce proceeding. But Texas is a “no fault” state, meaning that a party does not need a reason to file for divorce and the court may grant a divorce without regard to fault.
Why, then, would you claim adultery in a divorce proceeding in Texas? Because, despite being a “no fault” state, Texas does recognize fault grounds for divorce. The Texas Family Code states that a court may grant a divorce in favor of one spouse if the other spouse has committed adultery. Depending on the judge’s outlook, adultery could be a factor if committed after separation but before the granting of a divorce.
Finding one party in the divorce at fault due to adultery can have many effects on the outcome:
- Disproportionate division of the community estate
- The non-adulterous spouse receiving a greater amount of alimony
- Loss of child custody for the at-fault spouse
Family law judges have great decision-making power when dividing marital property. Even if a couple alleges other reasons for the divorce, such as irreconcilable differences, adultery could still be a factor the court may consider in the division of property. Therefore, it’s important to consult experienced legal counsel no matter which side of the adultery accusations you find yourself on.
The attorneys at Orsinger, Nelson, Downing & Anderson are here to help you protect your interests in court and navigate the divorce process. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.