Will fault impact the outcome of a Connecticut divorce?

On Behalf of | May 30, 2023 | Divorce |

In Connecticut, the outcome of a divorce is primarily determined by equitable distribution and the children’s best interests, rather than fault. 

Connecticut follows a “no-fault” divorce approach, where proving wrongdoing or assigning blame is unnecessary. Let’s explore how fault may or may not impact the outcome of a divorce in Connecticut.

No-fault divorce and property division

Connecticut operates under the principle of equitable distribution, meaning marital assets and debts are divided fairly and justly. Faults like adultery or misconduct generally have little bearing on property division. Factors considered include the length of the marriage, contributions of each party and financial circumstances.

Child custody determination

The primary consideration in child custody cases is the child’s best interests. While fault in the marriage breakdown itself does not hold much weight, instances of abuse or neglect can impact custody decisions. Factors evaluated include the child’s relationship with each parent, emotional and physical well-being and the ability to provide a stable environment.

Exceptional circumstances

While fault typically has limited influence, there may be exceptional circumstances where it becomes a factor. For example, if one party’s actions directly harm the children or cause significant financial damage, the court may take fault into consideration. In such cases, fault can impact custody arrangements or property division to safeguard the family’s well-being.

Spousal support or alimony

Fault can sometimes play a role in determining spousal support or alimony. Although Connecticut law primarily focuses on factors such as the length of the marriage, the earning capacity of each spouse and their financial needs, the fault may be considered in exceptional situations. Instances of marital misconduct or economic harm caused by one spouse’s behavior may affect the award of spousal support.

In Connecticut, fault generally does not heavily influence divorce outcomes. The state’s no-fault approach prioritizes equitable distribution and the children’s best interests. Knowing your rights and options will help you navigate the divorce process.


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