When you are deeply in love with your spouse, it can be nearly impossible to imagine that your spouse would ever do anything to hurt you, let alone cheat on you. To be fair, episodes of infidelity are rarely the result of a person intentionally looking to cause pain for their spouse or committed romantic partner. In many cases, in fact, unfaithfulness is often the manifestation of much deeper problems in the relationship, including a lack of communication, feelings of isolation, and discontent with one another. Infidelity, however, may be the last straw that leads the offended spouse to file for divorce, often with the expectation that such behavior may afford him or her additional considerations in the divorce process.
Limited Legal Impact
It is completely understandable that a spouse whose partner is guilty of infidelity would feel betrayed and angry and would wish to hold the cheating party accountable for his or her behavior. If you ever found yourself in that type of situation, it would only seem fair for your spouse to be responsible for breaking up your marriage in that way. Unless you and your spouse negotiated an infidelity clause in a valid prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, however, you are most likely going to be out of luck, at least as far the law is concerned.
Infidelity, along with all other negative or destructive behaviors like mental or physical cruelty or abandonment, can no longer be used as official grounds for divorce in Illinois. Recent changes to the law provide that all divorces in the state are to be granted on the grounds of irreconcilable differences, regardless of what may have occurred during the marriage. The law also prohibits a divorce judge from considering a spouse’s “misconduct” when dividing marital property or deciding whether to award spousal maintenance (alimony)....