Unfortunately, infidelity is commonplace among both husbands and wives. In fact, around 30 percent of men and 15 percent of women commit adultery during their lifetimes. In Florida, adultery is not relevant in obtaining dissolution of marriage because the state does not offer fault-based divorce. However, evidence of adultery can have a big impact on alimony, distribution of property and time-sharing (custody).
Alimony is a post-divorce monetary payment from one ex-spouse to another ex-spouse, regardless of gender. The court can order several forms of alimony, which range from temporary to permanent. When deciding the amount or duration of alimony, a judge considers several factors, including any factor which is necessary to do equity and justice between the parties. Oftentimes, evidence of infidelity is a relevant factor.
During a divorce, a judge distributes the marital property between the spouses in an equitable manner. There are many factors a judge looks at to determine equitability, including any factor necessary for equity and justice between the parties. If one party expended marital funds on extramarital activities, this makes the infidelity a relevant factor in property division.
In Florida, the official term for custody is time-sharing. In matters regarding time-sharing, the court considers any factor relevant to the best interests of the child. In some cases, a spouse’s new lover may be a relevant factor. For example:
- The new lover is violent or has a criminal record
- The new lover has a history of drug or alcohol abuse
- The new lover causes the spouse to neglect their parental duties
By presenting evidence of infidelity, you might have more favorable outcomes in regard to alimony, property division and time-sharing. However, exposing infidelity has many downsides. It could cause long-term relationship damage with your children, ex-spouse and extended family. Furthermore, you may need to hire a costly private investigator to find concrete evidence of infidelity. An experienced Orlando divorce attorney can help you determine which option best suits your unique situation.