Infidelity is a common reason for many divorces. When a couple’s marriage is affected by infidelity, the emotional toll can be overwhelming. While a divorce can be difficult, custody battles can be even more challenging. Many people who have had an affair worry that they will lose custody of their children as a result. However, the answer to whether or not having an affair means you will lose your kids is not a simple one.
How Are Custody Decisions Made?
In most states, including New Jersey child custody decisions are made based on the best interests of the child. The court will consider a variety of factors when making this determination, including the child’s age, the relationship between the child and each parent, each parent’s ability to care for the child, and the stability of each parent’s home environment. Infidelity alone is generally not considered to be a determining factor when it comes to custody decisions.
However, if the affair had a negative impact on the child or the child’s relationship with the parent who had the affair, it may be taken into consideration by the court. For example, if the parent’s affair caused them to neglect their parental responsibilities or if the child witnessed inappropriate behavior, the court may view this as a factor that could affect the child’s well-being.
Marital Fault Due to Infidelity
In addition to child custody, infidelity can also affect other aspects of divorce proceedings. In New Jersey, infidelity is considered a form of marital fault, which means it can be used as grounds for divorce. However, New Jersey is a no-fault divorce state, which means that infidelity alone is not enough to guarantee a favorable outcome for the non-offending spouse. Marital fault can be considered when determining the distribution of assets and alimony payments, but it is only one of many factors that will be taken into account.
When it comes to the distribution of assets, the court will consider a variety of factors to determine how to divide property and debts. In New Jersey, marital property is subject to equitable distribution, which means that assets and debts will be divided in a way that is fair but not necessarily equal. If one spouse spent marital funds on their affair, this could be taken into account when dividing assets and debts. However, it is important to note that infidelity alone is not enough to cause one spouse to lose all of their marital assets or be solely responsible for all of the marital debts.
Is Alimony Affected by Infidelity?
Alimony payments may also be affected by infidelity. In New Jersey, alimony payments are determined based on a variety of factors, including the length of the marriage, each spouse’s income and earning capacity, and each spouse’s contributions to the marriage. If the spouse who had the affair earns more money than the other spouse or spent marital funds on their affair, this could be taken into account when determining alimony payments. However, again, infidelity alone is not enough to guarantee a certain outcome.
What About Child Support?
In general, child support is not directly affected by infidelity. The reason is that child support is calculated based on the income of both parents, the needs of the child, and the amount of time each parent spends with the child. The court’s priority is to ensure that the child’s financial needs are met, regardless of the personal behavior of the parents.
However, there are some situations where infidelity could indirectly affect child support. For example, if the cheating spouse spends a significant amount of money on the affair, it could impact their ability to pay child support. If the cheating spouse’s income decreases as a result of paying for expensive gifts or trips, they may not be able to contribute as much to child support. Additionally, if the affair led to the dissolution of the marriage and the non-cheating spouse becomes the primary custodial parent, the cheating spouse may have to pay more child support as a result.
It’s important to note that child support is not a punishment for the actions of either parent. The primary goal of child support is to provide for the child’s needs, not to penalize one parent for their behavior. Infidelity may be a factor in the overall divorce proceedings, but it is unlikely to have a direct impact on child support. If you are concerned, it’s best to speak to a child support lawyer for men.
While infidelity may not be the determining factor in custody decisions or divorce settlements, it can still have an impact. Emotions run high during a divorce, and accusations of infidelity can make the process even more difficult. It is important to work with a skilled attorney who can help you navigate the legal system and protect your rights. An experienced attorney can also help you negotiate a fair settlement that takes into account all of the relevant factors, including infidelity, if it is relevant to your case.
Custody and Child Support Lawyer for Men
Having an affair does not mean that you will lose custody of your children or be solely responsible for all of your marital debts. However, it can have an impact on the outcome of your divorce proceedings, including custody decisions, asset distribution, and alimony payments. If you are facing a divorce and have concerns about the impact of infidelity on your case, it is important to work with a divorce attorney for dads who can help you protect your rights and interests, and work towards achieving the best possible outcome for you and your children.
The Micklin Law Group is a leading family law firm in New Jersey, with a proven track record of success in handling complex divorce and custody cases. Our child custody attorneys have the knowledge and experience necessary to navigate the complexities of family law, and we are committed to providing our clients with the highest level of legal representation and personalized attention. If you are facing a divorce or custody battle, contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn how we can help you.