Divorce can be devastating whether you have a child or not. It can be stressful, depressing and overwhelming, from arranging documents to learning about the Singapore divorce process and hiring a lawyer. In fact, one of the most common causes of divorce is infidelity or adultery.
When a partner cheats on his (or her) spouse, it does put substantial damage and strain on their marriage and relationship. So much that it warrants a dissolution of their marriage once adultery is proven to have happened. Nonetheless, many are still in the process or lack understanding about the realistic expectations when one seeks to divorce their partner on adultery grounds.
Divorce – On Grounds Of Adultery
While adultery is not a criminal offence in Singapore, it does serve as a justifiable ground for another partner to initiate a divorce proceeding against the spouse. A divorce in Singapore can cost around $2,000 to 30,000 or more, depending if it is a simplified or contested divorce. But the experience of having to stay with an adulterous spouse is unbearable.
If one would initiate divorce against their partner on the grounds of adultery, here are a few must-know information first:
Sexual intercourse should have taken place as a criterion
Showing proof that your spouse is communicating in an intimate manner via text messages will not be sufficient before the eyes of the court. Evidence of physical activities such as hugging, kissing or holding hands with the alleged third party can also be inadequate in the divorce procedure under the grounds of adultery.
If you want to provide credible proof of adultery against your spouse (the defendant), you need evidence that sexual intercourse has occurred between your spouse and the alleged third party. The courts and the divorce procedure in Singapore have adopted a high standard in providing proof, and with that comes the increasing difficulty of proving adultery.
No matter if you have the best divorce lawyer in Singapore, so long as your evidence is not credible, it may turn against you. Hence, others would need to hire a private investigator to gather more proof of adultery.
Third-party must be of the opposite gender
As we have said earlier, proving adultery in Singapore can be challenging and difficult, especially if you suspect your partner has an intimate relationship with the same gender. It can be proven committed and be taken place between a third party of the opposite sex.
However, if you have suspected your spouse of engaging in an intimate affair with the same gender, you can always consult a divorce lawyer. Though, you might also need to consider the lawyer fees for divorce. You should also change and consider the grounds for divorce.
You need to provide proof of intolerable living with your spouse due to adultery
As the plaintiff (the one who has the role of proving that the defendant has committed infidelity), you will also need to provide sufficient evidence that living with your spouse (the defendant) is unbearable as a result of their adultery. Then the court will evaluate and assess if that circumstance is intolerable for a reasonable person.
The defendant and the plaintiff will also receive an assessment to establish whether the given circumstance and evidence warrant a divorce and if it is valid proof of adultery.
You only have a limited period to file for divorce
It’s one of the first common instincts for one to make an intense effort to save a failing marriage before considering filing for divorce. With all the hassle of spending your finances on a lawyer fees for divorce, your time for paperwork, gathering of evidence, custody, assets, etc., it makes sense for most to put it all to save a marriage first.
If this is your situation, understand that you cannot divorce your spouse (based on the grounds of adultery) if you are living with them for six months or more upon discovering their infidelity. Why is that so? Because it can be argued and perceived in the court that you have acknowledged the adulterous relationship of your spouse. It also serves as evidence that you have forgiven the affair. Therefore, you continue to live with your spouse for six months or more.
Adultery will not affect the division of marital assets
The plaintiff should not expect to have a separation of marital assets in the plaintiff’s favour due to the result of the defendant being guilty of committing adultery alone. It will not also impact or influence child custody. However, the court may decide that the child may not be in the best interest under the custody of the defendant. Yet, it is a case-to-case basis that may require engagement with a divorce or family lawyer in Singapore.
The Most Common Divorce Mistakes You Need To Know
If the marriage is proven based on the divorce procedure requirement and you are heading for an inevitable divorce, here are a few common mistakes that people often make during divorce:
- Lack of financial planning
- Discussing divorce with your ex-spouse along with children
- Seeking legal advice from family members and friends
- Avoid getting a financial order
- Thinking you can change your ex-spouse
- Posting on social media about the divorce
- Not looking for the best divorce lawyer for your case
- Taking everything with yourself
- Not engaging or consulting with a divorce lawyer
Avoiding these mentioned mistakes will help you get into trouble and ensure a smooth-sailing divorce process.
If you want to know more about the divorce procedure in Singapore or seek legal advice, you can visit Lie Chin Chin for an experienced divorce lawyer that you can trust.