Portrait of John K Grubb

Texas Divorce and Prenuptial Agreement

4550 Post Oak Place, Suite 201 • Houston, Texas 77027-3139

Phone: 713-877-8800 • Fax: 713-877-1229

Proving Adultery for Your Divorce

Texas offers both no-fault divorces and fault divorces. The majority of divorces are no-fault ones where two spouses simply state in their divorce petition that they have irreconcilable differences and are unable to continue on in the marriage (the official legal term is “insupportability” in Texas). As we discussed Monday, all states today offer no-fault divorces, but in many, including Texas, divorce where one spouse blames the other, a fault divorce, is still an option that can have different consequences from those of a no-fault divorce.

Proving fault during your divorce case

The grounds in Texas for a fault divorce are adultery, cruel treatment, abandonment, incarceration, confinement to a mental hospital, or living apart for at least three years. As you might expect, if you allege fault when you file for divorce, your case will likely go much less than smoothly than if you and your spouse filed for a no-fault divorce. This is because you have to prove the fault in court.

Consider the case of having to prove adultery on the part of your spouse. You need to have more than suspicions or clues of adultery because you will have to convince a judge that your spouse actually committed the adultery. Proving the adultery can be time consuming and expensive if you do not have outright evidence of it.

If you do need to put in some work in order to prove adultery, you and your attorney should weigh the costs and benefits of proving fault versus the impact the fault will have on your divorce decree. Texas is a community property state, meaning that property that a couple acquires during the course of their marriage is presumed to belong to both of them. If you prove fault, this can result in a financial settlement tilted in favor of the spouse who did not commit adultery. But, your case ultimately depends on the judge before whom you and your spouse find yourselves. Some judges may be more forgiving towards adultery, and the ultimate impact on your divorce settlement could be little.

Have you been involved in a fault divorce case? How difficult did you find the process of proving fault?

John K. Grubb & Associates, P.C. – Houston divorce attorneys

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