According to the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, survey results show that 15 percent of married women and 25 percent of married men have had an affair outside of the marriage. While some couples can overcome infidelity in a marriage, it can often lead to divorce.
If you have chosen to divorce your spouse, you may be wondering if adultery can impact your Oregon divorce. While adultery does not affect whether the divorce will be granted, it can impact other parts of the divorce, such as alimony.
Oregon is a no-fault divorce state
In no-fault divorce states like Oregon, you will not establish fault or cite a specific reason (e.g., one spouse committing adultery) for the divorce. You will simply cite “irreconcilable breakdown of the marriage” as the reason for divorce and the court will generally not ask about infidelity or any other misconduct that occurred during the marriage.
Adultery can impact alimony and other factors
While infidelity does not generally impact the divorce process, it can play a role when it comes to alimony and custody determinations. The court may consider infidelity in the following situations:
- The unfaithful spouse was spending a significant amount of money on their affair partner, resulting in financial harm to the other spouse (e.g., marital debt).
- The unfaithful spouse’s affair caused the other spouse emotional distress which prevented them from keeping a job.
- The unfaithful spouse endangered child because of their affair.
Adultery may be devastating to a marriage but may not always have an impact on legal matters relating to your divorce. An attorney can guide you throughout the divorce process and help determine if adultery will play a role in your divorce.