Alimony in Georgia
Committing Adultery Can Cost You Alimony in Georgia
Adultery (cheating) can be devastating to a marriage, and doing so often leads to divorce. If you and your spouse have decided to end your marriage due to one spouse’s adultery, you may be wondering whether the adultery will affect any aspect of the divorce, including the subject of alimony in Georgia.
This article will walk you through how Alimony in Georgia works and how committing adultery can affect possible alimony awards in the state of Georgia. If you have additional questions, contact an experienced attorney to assist with your divorce.
Alimony in Georgia
In the state of Georgia, alimony is financial support given to one spouse (the “supported” or unearning spouse) from the other spouse (the higher-earning spouse). Alimony begins after a divorce has been finalized, and ultimately provides temporary or permanent support for a spouse based on a variety of factors, including:
- The earning capacity of each spouse
- The length of the marriage
- Standard of living during the marriage
- The age and physical condition of each spouse
- The financial resources available to each spouse
- Length of time a supported spouse needs to get employed
- The contributions of each spouse to the marriage
A spouse requesting alimony after divorce is required to prove financial need for support. In addition, he/she must prove the ability of his/her spouse to pay support. Once need and ability have been proven, the factors above determine whether alimony should be awarded and how much should be supplied.
Alimony can be temporary, lasting for a set period time, or permanent, lasting until the supported spouse remarries or dies.
Calculating Alimony in Georgia
There is no formula for calculating alimony in Georgia; the court determines alimony on a case-by-case basis.
For a detailed discussion of alimony, the types of alimony, and its effects in Georgia see Understanding and Calculating Alimony.
Adultery in a Georgia Divorce
In the state of Georgia, adultery is legally defined as one spouse having sexual intercourse with someone other than his or her spouse. Adultery cannot be proven with testimony alone. Evidence like phone records, credit card statements, photos, or witnesses is required to make a case.
The spouse isn’t required to prove that sexual intercourse took place. Rather, it must be proven that his/her spouse has both the opportunity and the inclination to commit adultery.
Proving adultery can be rather complex. You need to be familiar with the rules and procedure of a trial. We suggest contacting an experienced family law attorney before trying to prove adultery in your divorce case, whether or not the adultery in question will affect alimony payments.
How Does Adultery Impact Alimony in Georgia?
When adultery is the cause of a divorce in Georgia, the spouse that was unfaithful can be barred from receiving alimony if the court decides to do so.
However, it’s not enough that a spouse cheated during a marriage. The infidelity must be the main reason for the divorce if alimony is to be barred. If one spouse cheated but was forgiven for a period of time, the unfaithful spouse can’t be denied alimony if he/she can prove a need for it.
To legally prove infidelity is the main reason for divorce, the faithful spouse must file for divorce on the grounds of adultery, rather than irreconcilable differences. To read more about the grounds for divorce in Georgia, see The Basics of Filing for Divorce in Georgia.
Social Media and Divorce
Social Media Records can certainly be archived and used in a Court of Law. These records include but are not limited too:
Facebook Messages, Twitter, Snapchat, LinkedIn, Instagram, Google+, and additional messaging apps and social media platforms.
Note: Even after the deletion of messages, these records can be requested and retrieved.
Can Adultery Cost You The Right To Child Custody?
Adultery doesn’t usually have an effect on custody in the state of Georgia unless the parent that has committed adultery is proven unfit.
In the state of Georgia Children that reach the age of 14 years can voice their preference when it comes to which parent they prefer to stay with after the divorce. The court still decides who gets physical custody. The judge has the final say so in the matter; the goal is always the best interest of the children.
What about Financial Debts and Assets?
Adultery can have an impact on how a divorcing couple’s assets are divided, especially if the unfaithful spouse spent money on the affair, for example, buying gifts or paying for trips and hotel rooms can influence the case.
If you have other questions about alimony and adultery and live in the Greater Atlanta Area feel free to schedule a consultation with Stephanie D. Dixon. Initial consultation fees can be paid online, or by phone.