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Effects of Infidelity on Divorce in South Carolina

When a spouse of a married couple gets involved in a voluntary sexual relationship with another person who is not his or her married spouse, the relationship explains adultery or infidelity. In many states, adultery or infidelity is one of the most important legal grounds for a divorce. But, some states don’t consider adultery or infidelity as the legal ground for a divorce case.

The court allows a “fault-based” divorce according to the state laws of South Carolina. Any kind of marital misconduct or cheating is a legal fault when the court judges a divorce case in South Carolina. procedure of the property and the responsibility of the child custody.

Adultery or infidelity is one of the most common legal grounds in South Carolina. Infidelity affects the alimony award of a dependent spouse. But, infidelity doesn’t affect the dividing


What is an alimony award due to a divorce in South Carolina?

There are many types of alimony awards in South Carolina according to state law. A dependent spouse gets temporarily alimony award as “Pendente lite” as a financial help when the divorce case is on processing. The court grants “Periodic alimony” as a monthly installment to the dependent spouse after the settlement of divorce case.

It will continue until the death of either spouse, the dependent spouse gets married for the second time to another person or changes in the financial condition of any spouse of the couple. Sometimes, the court grants “Lump-sum” alimony award by one time or part payment and it can be paid in cash or other ways.

When the court decides that the dependent spouse is eligible for seeking vocational training or education to be self-dependent, “Rehabilitative alimony” can be granted by the court to the dependent spouse. The court can make the payment for “Rehabilitative alimony” periodically or a within a lump-sum.

But, the court will decide when the payment for “Rehabilitative alimony” will be made after the completion of such vocational training or education. The court grants “Separate maintenance” when the spouse starts to live separately without the final settlement of divorce and one spouse still requires financial support.

The court decides for alimony award by considering some factors in South Carolina and some of these factors are stated below.

  • The duration of the marriage period
  • Present and potential job skill, income, and education of each spouse
  • The mental and physical health condition of each spouse
  • The living standard of the couple during the marriage period
  • Responsibilities for childcare of each spouse
  • Amount of property of each spouse
  • Responsibilities for childcare and alimony award from an earlier relationship
  • Types of marriage misconduct made by one spouse

Effects of infidelity on alimony award in South Carolina

In South Carolina, the court will not allow a spouse charged with adultery or infidelity to receive an alimony award. When the faithful spouse supports infidelity, another spouse can get an alimony award. When a spouse starts to live separately before the final settlement of divorce case, he or she will not be able to have sexual relations with another person who is not his or her spouse. But, the evidence of infidelity before the final decision of divorce will be the cause of being an unfaithful spouse and the court will not allow him or her to get any alimony award in the future.

There is no requirement for direct proof for filing a divorce case due to the infidelity of a spouse if the faithful spouse can give the proof with circumstantial evidence of infidelity. There is no effect of infidelity for dividing the property except when the unfaithful spouse spends a specific amount of the couple’s money on infidelity. In South Carolina, the court doesn’t consider infidelity to make the decision for the responsibility of child custody or visitation.

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