Adultery Is Not Only Grounds for Divorce. It’s Criminal.
It can be heartbreaking when you find out that your spouse has committed adultery. The person that you trusted most betrayed you. For many people, infidelity is a marriage-breaker. It remains one of the top reasons that people give for filing for separation or divorce.
In Maryland, adultery is still grounds for divorce and will likely always remain so. Unlike many other states, however, Maryland also views adultery as a crime. Last year, at least three people were charged with a misdemeanor for having been accused of committing adultery. One person is attempting to change that, calling the idea that adultery is criminalized “arcane.”
Del. Kathleen Dumais has introduced a bill that would decriminalize adultery, making it a personal matter and not one for the courts. Someone charged with adultery, and found guilty, is subject to a $10 fine.
According to the public defender’s office, five cases of adultery have been handled in the last eight years. In those five cases, adultery was not the primary crime. States in which adultery is considered criminal include: Alabama, Virginia, Minnesota, Mississippi, Arizona and 14 more, including Maryland.
In Virginia, lawmaker have tried to reduce adultery to a civil matter, but have been unsuccessful in their attempts.
If you need assistance with a divorce in Columbia, MD,, or any other kind of family law matter, reach out to our office. We will help you arrange a consultation and discuss your legal options with you. Call today to schedule your appointment and discover more about how we can assist you.