My wife and I have a great marriage. She told me early on that if we got married, divorce is not an option and I love and respect that about her. All that said, I know that if I wanted a divorce without her fighting me on it, all I would have to do is cheat.
While cheating is certainly grounds for divorce and happens all of the time in a divorce, the truth is that it’s not really relevant in a divorce. Unless one spouse is taking a ton of marital funds and spending it on their lover or is ditching their kids (which could effect custody) then no Judge is going to care about how awful the cheater is.
And cheaters are awful. If you want to cheat, have the guts to level with your spouse. But if you are being a coward and sneaking around, you won’t get punished by a Judge. It won’t change how assets and debts are divided up or who gets primary custody of the kids or pets.
When scorned people learn that they can’t go after their spouse for being a scumbag, they next think to go after the a-hole who is cheating too. This is called an alienation of affection lawsuit. Some states have that law and actually put some teeth behind it. Illinois has that law too, but the truth is that it’s a phantom law. Unless you can show that your spouse’s lover put them under some spell where they couldn’t control themselves (highly unlikely) you wouldn’t have a case. Even then your damages are limited to actual damages such as bills for seeing a therapist. In other words, you’d likely spend more money on an attorney that you can recover.
I have seen how these selfish actions have hurt some of my friends who have had to deal with it happening to them. It sucks, but the reality is that you either accept the cheating happened and try to save your marriage or decide that a divorce is best for you and file for divorce. But once you fill out the paperwork telling the Judge that you are asking for an end to your marriage because of infidelity, you need to move on from a legal standpoint. Otherwise you will just drive yourself crazy.
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