Most states, including Virginia, are equitable division of marital property states. While Virginia courts strive to equally split marital assets during a divorce, certain factors that led to the divorce can impact how the process unfolds. The recent hack of a website devoted to providing a discreet means of infidelity has brought to light just how infidelity can impact a divorce settlement.
One way in which the personal or emotional reasons that a marriage dissolved can affect the divorce process is the length of time a divorce may take. When a party is angry over infidelity, that party may prolong the divorce as a means of punishing the person found to be unfaithful. This can happen by way of wanting more than an equitable share, thereby making an agreement more difficult to formulate.
Another way in which infidelity may affect a divorce settlement can be the monetary cost of the indiscretion. While equitable division of marital assets is the goal, an exorbitant amount of money from a joint or marital account may have been used to buy gifts or finance an affair. The jilted party may seek retribution by seeking restitution through the divorce settlement.
While infidelity may be a personal matter, any Virginia couples going through a divorce related to alleged or proven infidelity may want to consider how that indiscretion may relate to a divorce settlement as well as the timeline of a divorce in general. The more contentious a divorce may be, the longer the process and the more emotionally draining it may be also. When both parties can agree to a divorce settlement, one which may take into account the toll of infidelity, property division and an overall agreement may be obtained in a more timely fashion.
Source: forbes.com, "How Your Spouse's Ashley Madison Account Can Impact Your Divorce", Emma Johnson, Aug. 21, 2015