“He cheated!” She broke your heart! He tore the family apart! It’s her fault she had an affair!
We’ve heard it all. It’s heart braking and it’s unfair, but it doesn’t matter to the courts.
Colorado is a no-fault divorce state. Meaning the person asking for a divorce DOES NOT have to prove the other person committed adultery, was physically or emotionally cruel or abandoned the other party. Instead, they just have to state that the marriage is irretrievably broken. A no-fault divorce state like ours also means that the other person has no grounds to object to the Petition for Dissolution. If one person thinks the marriage is irretrievably broken, the marriage is irretrievably broken.
Another consequence of our no-fault divorce state is that in dividing martial assets or awarding maintenance the Court is not going to consider the wrongs of the other person that lead to the marriage breaking down. There will be no financial compensation for broken vows or a broken heart. Likewise, in determining child custody the Court is going to only consider those factors that help it determine what is in the best interest of the children. Generally, an extra-marital affair is not going to come into play when a Court makes this decision.
So, at the end of the day in Colorado, all that matters to the Court is that the marriage is broken, not the how or why it became broken. Although this may not be fair, especially for the wronged spouse, it makes divorces a lot cleaner since a person’s dirty laundry is not aired.