Attorney Katherine Kraus

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How adultery might impact alimony in an Arizona divorce

On Behalf of | Mar 27, 2020 | Divorce

One of the most common reasons for a divorce in Arizona is infidelity. Adultery will inevitably cause problems in a relationship that can result in the end of a marriage. This is an undoubtedly difficult topic to deal with in any marriage. A key point that concerns people when they decide to divorce is alimony and how cheating might impact it.

Alimony can also be referred to as “maintenance” and “spousal support”. Regardless of terminology, there are myriad factors that are considered when it is determined. Adultery occurs when a legally married individual engages in voluntary sexual activity or a relationship with another person. Since most divorces in Arizona are “no-fault” meaning there is no blame accorded, adultery does not need to be shown as a precondition for the divorce. However, adultery can be considered in a “covenant marriage”. A covenant marriage means that the parties have taken part in counseling prior to the marriage so the bond is stronger.

Still, adultery will not markedly influence the alimony award one way or the other. The award is based on the following:

  • The marital standard of living
  • How long the marriage lasted
  • Employment factors and earning capacity
  • The physical and emotional condition of the spouse who is receiving support
  • How much the paying spouse can afford for self and spousal support
  • The contributions of the receiving spouse
  • A child’s educational costs in the future
  • Income factors
  • Financial resources
  • How long it might take for the receiving spouse to be trained or educated for self-support
  • If there are excessive expenditures, hidden assets or health insurance costs
  • Any other valid concerns

During a divorce, alimony can lead to a dispute. This could be especially acrimonious if adultery was a reason for the marriage ending. Understanding the circumstances of how alimony is determined is imperative regardless of the situation. Having legal advice from a law firm experienced in divorce may be an essential element.

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