I Had an Affair, Will I Lose Everything in a Divorce?

by | Mar 25, 2013 | Firm News |

There are many reasons why people file for divorce in Sacramento.  Unfortunately, one of the most common reasons one spouse will file for divorce is discovery that their spouse has engaged in an extra-marital affair.  A question we commonly encounter from both the “perpetrator” of the affair and the “victim” of the affair is what effect the affair will have on the divorce case.  Some may even ask if they will lose everything in a divorce proceeding.

While an affair is a devastating thing for anyone to experience and can be the reason a marriage is ending, the truth is, California is a “no-fault” state.

  This means that Sacramento divorce parties do not have to prove to the judge that they have valid grounds for a divorce.  In fact, the Sacramento judge usually does not want to hear the messy details behind the divorce request because it is an unnecessary discussion.  All the Sacramento divorce petitioner has to demonstrate is that there are “irreconcilable differences” between the parties.  (In rare cases, the Sacramento divorce petitioner can file for divorce on the basis of incurable insanity among a few other rare circumstances.)  Once there is a simple demonstration of irreconcilable differences, the court will proceed through the divorce process.  Child custody and visitation orders may be made (if applicable).  Spousal support and child support orders may be made (if applicable).  Marital property can still be valued and divided under California’s community property laws.  For the “perpetrator” of the affair, there is no legal punishment or consequence under California’s family code.

If there has been an affair in your marriage or relationship and you need to understand your divorce rights under California law, please call us immediately.  We are experienced family law attorneys and we offer a free half-hour consultation.  We will discuss your case and how to understand the divorce process.  Please contact us today.