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Can I Get Custody If I Cheated?

When it comes to child custody in a divorce case, there are no explicit legal consequences of committing adultery in California. As such, a custody battle can become complex, involving a wide range of considerations, none of which have to do with cheating. There is little doubt that your ex-spouse may try to use your infidelity as leverage for winning full custody and denying your parental rights. However, it doesn’t mean that they will win.

As a parent, it only makes sense that you’d be concerned that your infidelity will have a bearing on the court’s decision regarding who gets custody. However, a judge may not see it that way. Furthermore, you may be able to negotiate a mutually agreed-upon arrangement with your ex-spouse so that you can avoid taking your case to court altogether.

Does Cheating Count in a Custody Battle?

California is a no-fault divorce state. This typically means that a person can file for a divorce without legally blaming their spouse for the separation. The main point of concern is that the marriage is irreconcilable. Infidelity does not always impact issues such as estate settlements, alimony, or child custody.

There are some cases in which cheating may be considered as a central issue in a child custody battle such as:

  • The affair directly affected the emotional or physical well-being of the child.
  • The affair caused severe financial harm to the family.
  • The cheating spouse neglected their parental duties to engage in the affair.
  • The boyfriend/girlfriend spent time in the home or in front of the children.

However, in most cases, affairs are kept secret and away from the home. Consequently, they have little impact on a judgment in a joint custody case. Furthermore, the state of California recognizes that children are better off maintaining healthy relationships with both parents. In any case, the courts will always have the children’s best interests in mind when deciding who gets custody.

Why You Want an Experienced Child Custody Attorney

Child custody battles are complex because they entail a wide range of emotional and relational issues in the home. Spouses can turn on each other in an attempt to gain control of the children. In fact, it’s not uncommon for one party to embellish facts or make false accusations to deny custody to the other party.

For this reason, if your ex-husband or wife is attempting to take full custody of your children, you should seek legal representation from an experienced child custody attorney. An attorney can help you in several ways, including:

  • Providing legal consultation and guidance
  • Obtaining evidence and documents that support your case
  • Addressing all relevant parties and the courts on your behalf
  • Managing your case and developing a legal strategy
  • Fighting for your rights to help you keep your children

A child custody attorney can listen to your situation, consider all potential outcomes, and help you establish the best solution for protecting your parental rights. They can act as your advocate when you have been falsely accused of mistreating your children even if you have committed adultery.

We Help Clients in Child Custody Cases in San Jose, California

At the Law Offices of Steven E. Springer, we are passionate about helping parents who are struggling to maintain custody of their children. We bring an objective and compassionate approach to every child custody case we handle. To find out more about our divorce and child custody services in San Jose, Morgan Hill, Fremont, Hayworth, and the surrounding areas of California, call to set up a free consultation.


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