What Is Marital Misconduct?

Getting a divorce in North Carolina is never easy, but the situation becomes much more complex when domestic violence or other negative behaviors are involved on the part of one of the spouses. If you are seeking a divorce because your spouse was abusive or unfaithful, the emotional turmoil is considerable. However, it is also important to understand how the law works in North Carolina. For instance, marital misconduct can affect the amount of alimony that one spouse is expected to pay to the other. According to the state of North Carolina, marital misconduct refers to specific harmful acts that took place prior to separation.

There are several behaviors that fall under marital misconduct. Examples of marital misconduct include illicit sexual behavior, involuntary separation due to a criminal act on the part of one party, abandonment, domestic violence, reckless spending, or excessive use of drugs or alcohol. Other acts that may fall under marital misconduct include failing to provide necessary material comfort to an unbearable level or exposing your spouse to intolerable indignities.

In order for marital misconduct to affect alimony, it is important to prove that the conduct actually took place during the marriage. If any of this misconduct takes place after the parties have separated, it will not affect alimony payments. However, if misconduct began during the marriage and continues after separation, providing proof of continuing misconduct can indeed be helpful to a marital misconduct case.

It is important to discuss potential marital misconduct with a legal professional whether you are alleging the misconduct harmed you during the marriage or if you are dealing with an allegation of misconduct.

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