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Does Fault Impact Support?

As an experienced, Louisville divorce attorney and mediator, I understand divorce can be an extremely emotional process for one or both of individuals in a marriage.  When issues such as infidelity are involved, the betrayal, pain and anger can cause the aggrieved spouse to want to use the court system as a way of getting revenge.  I often hear the question, “Does fault impact support I might win?”

There are many reasons an individual may want to use the divorce process as a club.  An affair can have devastating consequences beyond the simple fracturing of the marriage covenant.  The embarrassment, the shame and other emotions are raw.  It’s completely understandable.  However, Kentucky has a no-fault system.  As I discussed in a previous video and blog post, it only takes one spouse to petition for a dissolution, regardless of the wishes of the other spouse.

That being said, even in situations involving infidelity or other breaches of trust, does fault impact support?  As it relates to the level of spousal support, child support or other financial obligations, no it does not.

Now, given the nature of the circumstances, you and your attorney may be able to negotiate for additional considerations.  Again, I’ve commented on the advantage of using mediation, in a previous video and blog.  Remember though, the court is under no obligation to increase support based on something someone did, as it relates to marital infidelity.

Revenge-Based Divorce

Revenge-based divorce cases are especially challenging.  A spouse may be feeling her/his only means of punishing the other person for walking away, is to bury them in endless motions and ongoing litigation.  One of the challenges is that the pain can stoke intense emotions, which can completely cloud a person’s judgement.  Even if her/his attorney negotiates a solid agreement, the individual may be less focused on moving forward and more so on attempting to bet back at the other person.  Eventually, the judge will lose patience with this approach.  In the end, it could actual begin to negatively impact the person’s position.