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Adultery's impact on divorce in Pennsylvania

Couples in Pennsylvania no longer need a reason to divorce. A recent law passed stating couples seeking a no-fault divorce only have to wait one year to follow through as opposed to two years. 

However, couples can still file for divorce on the grounds of adultery. In some states, one spouse being unfaithful has no impact on the divorce proceedings, but that is not the case in Pennsylvania. There are cases where adultery can affect some of the items in a divorce, and both spouses need to be ready.

Distribution of property

When it comes to the division of assets, judges will not consider marital misconduct. When dividing all of this, the judge will consider various factors, such as the length of the marriage, income potential of both spouses, both spouse' lifestyles and more. It does not matter if one spouse cheated on the other. 


Judges in Pennsylvania consider infidelity when determining spousal support. With that in mind, it is unlikely a judge will completely refuse spousal support to one spouse. A judge will look at health, age and earning capacity to determine a fair amount to award in alimony. In the event one spouse spent a lot of money on the paramour, then the judge will most likely require the unfaithful spouse to reimburse the other for those expenses. 

Child custody

Adultery occasionally impacts child custody arrangements, but it will not impact child support awards. A judge will usually avoid preventing one parent from seeing his or her children completely. However, judges will create a child custody agreement in the best interest of the children. If the judge decides it is not good for the children to be with an adulterous parent already living with his or her paramour, then more time may go to the other parent. The judge needs to consider the emotional, physical and mental well-being of the kids. 

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