What happens after adultery is proven?

After a spouse has proven that their partner has committed adultery, several things can happen. Fort Mill & Greenville, SC law considers adultery as a crime punishable by up to 180 days in jail and/or fines with a maximum limit of $500. If the non-cheating spouse also wants to use the adultery as grounds for divorce, he or she may do so, as long as they have proof of the offense. It can also play a role in several other aspects of the divorce, as outlined in in Fort Mill & Greenville, SC Code. These include:

  • No Waiting Period for Filing
    A no-fault divorce requires a one-year separation period before filing for divorce. Filing with adultery as the main grounds waives that waiting period, allowing the married couple to move forward with the divorce without delay. Adultery does not affect the minimum three-month waiting period for the final version of the divorce decree that applies to fault-based divorces.
  • Alimony
    In addition to the initial filing for divorce, adultery can also affect any potential alimony payments the adulterous spouse may have otherwise qualified for or received. In addition to acts of adultery that occurred before the divorce, South Carolina law can also apply the bar on alimony for any sexual relations committed during periods of separation in a no-fault divorce.
  • Marital Property
    In most cases, adultery will have little or no effect on the distribution of marital property. However, if the adulterous spouse used significant levels of marital funds on the individual he or she was cheating with, then the court will likely rule that the non-cheating spouse deserves some compensation for the loss of funds and will distribute marital property accordingly.


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