San Jose Family Lawyer Discusses Adultery as a Grounds for Divorce
A survey recently identified extramarital affairs as the most common reason for divorce in the United Kingdom. Undoubtedly, adultery is the leading cause of divorce in the United States as well. In California, irreconcilable differences is one of only two grounds available for obtaining a divorce. Such irreconcilable differences must have caused the irremediable breakdown of the marriage. It is up to the Court to determine whether there are substantial reasons for not continuing the marriage and which make it appear the marriage should be dissolved. This ground for divorce is purposefully broad so as to represent the actual reasons underlying marital breakdowns and simultaneously make irrelevant questions of “fault” or misconduct by either party. Needless to say, adultery is often the reason behind the irremediable breakdown of a marriage in California.
In sharp contrast, some states delve into the various grounds for divorce including adultery and cruel and inhuman treatment. The State of New York, for example, provides these as causes of action for a divorce. Nevertheless, adultery is difficult to prove and requires corroborating evidence from a third party. Cruel and inhuman treatment must be behavior that rises to the level such that it makes it improper for the plaintiff to continue to reside with the defendant as husband and wife. The longer the duration of the marriage, the more severe the level of cruelty must be in order to establish grounds under this cause of action. It is impossible to say which system is better but it is clear that adultery is one of the most common reasons for a divorce no matter whether “fault” is at issue or not.
If you or someone you know has questions about divorce or other aspects of family law such as spousal support, child support, or child custody and visitation, please contact Sagaria Law. Our team of family law attorneys can answer any such questions you may have and assist you through the process. We represent clients from Santa Clara County, Alameda County, Monterey County, San Mateo County, and surrounding areas. Contact our office today to schedule your free consultation to speak with one of our attorneys.