Adultery is a frequent cause of divorces, in Texas and across the United States. However, because Texas is a no-fault divorce state, you do not need a specific reason to ask for a divorce. Unlike in the 1940’s, a judge can grant a divorce without determining fault.
So, why would you bring up adultery during a divorce proceeding? Keep reading to learn more about how adultery affects a Texas divorce. If you have detailed questions about adultery and divorce, our experienced Dallas divorce attorneys can assist you.
What Is Considered Adultery In Texas?
Adultery in Texas is defined as voluntary sexual intercourse with another party besides your spouse. If adultery is alleged, it must be proven. This can be done with such things as videos, pictures, text messages, videos, eyewitness testimony, or bank and credit card statements. All of the things you have seen in a detective movie—and more—can serve as evidence of adultery in the right circumstances. Talk to an attorney to learn more about what evidence is admissible in court and how to get it legally.
Texas Is a No-Fault State For Divorce, But…
While Texas is a no-fault divorce state, it still recognizes fault grounds for divorce, as well. According to the Texas Family Code, the divorce court may grant a divorce in one party’s favor if the other spouse committed adultery that led to the break-up of the marriage in question. Remember, Texas does not have legal separation, and the marriage is in effect until the judge issues the final divorce decree. Thus, depending on who is the judge and other factors, adultery might be a consideration of the Court if the adultery happened after separation but before the divorce was finalized.
One party being found at fault in the divorce can impact the outcome of the case. For example, being found at fault for adultery in a Texas divorce could result in you receiving less community property in the Court’s ordered division. The judge also could assign the “offending” spouse more of the marital debt.
It is even possible for the at-fault parent to “lose” child custody in some cases. Infidelity in a Texas divorce does not necessarily affect child custody by itself, but it can be a factor. Adultery would need to affect the child or the child’s relationship with one of the parents for it to be a major factor. For example, if you committed adultery in the marriage and your new partner put your child at risk, this could have a major effect on child custody decisions by a court.
Texas family law judges have significant latitude when making important divorce decisions, notably the division of marital property and the sharing of child custody between the parties. Even if the parties allege other reasons for the breakup, adultery can play an outsized role in how the divorce is settled. That is why it is so important to be represented by a qualified Dallas divorce attorney.
Speak To Dallas Divorce Attorneys Now
If you suspect your spouse has committed adultery, it is important to discuss the matter with a knowledgeable attorney before taking legal action. Our Dallas divorce attorneys at Orsinger, Nelson, Downing & Anderson understand the harm that adultery does to a marriage, and we want to help you through this challenging time. For a confidential legal consultation, call us today at (214) 273-2400.