Adultery and a Massachusetts Divorce

| Oct 17, 2016 | Divorce |

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In Massachusetts, adultery is still a legal ground for divorce. While “no fault” divorces account for the overwhelming majority of complaints for divorce in Massachusetts, there are still “fault” grounds that are plead. In such cases, if adultery is plead and proven or stipulated to, a divorce may be granted for that reason.

Whether an affair is the grounds plead for divorce, or whether a divorce is “no fault”, the division of property, the alimony award (if any), and child support is rarely affected. While “conduct of the parties during the marriage” is a factor to be considered by a judge in dividing property the existence of an extramarital affair does not by itself mean that there will be a change in the property division or alimony award. If, however, one spouse was spending assets on his or her paramour, it is more likely that there will be a corresponding offset in dividing the parties’ assets.

What many people do not know is that in Massachusetts, adultery is a criminal offense however, this crime is very rarely prosecuted.

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