Adultery in Nebraska: Does Cheating Affect Alimony?

Learn whether an extramarital affair can impact spousal support in Nebraska.

Adultery can destroy the trust in a marriage, and often results in divorce. Some states punish a cheating spouse in a divorce by making that spouse ineligible to receive alimony.

This article explains how adultery affects alimony in the state, and other effects of adultery on a divorce. If you still have questions about alimony and adultery in Nebraska after reading this article, you should contact a local family law attorney.

Overview of Alimony in Nebraska

Nebraska courts may award alimony to a spouse (supported spouse) when that spouse needs help paying expenses after a divorce. Many couples divide duties during a marriage, with one spouse responsible for earning income and the other spouse responsible for taking care of the home and children. When such couples divorce, one may have much more earning potential than the other because of the division of duties during the marriage. In cases where one spouse is in a better economic situation than the other after a divorce, Nebraska courts often order the spouse with more resources to pay alimony to the other spouse.

Nebraska alimony is either paid periodically, for example, monthly or annually, or all at once in a lump-sum. Periodic alimony payments always end when either spouse dies, or when the supported spouse remarries, and may also end at a certain point in time, for example, after a certain number of years.

In Nebraska, courts determine alimony using the following factors:

  • length of the marriage
  • contributions to the marriage by each spouse
  • which spouse took care of children
  • whether either spouse gave up career or education opportunities
  • the ability of the supported spouse to work, and
  • the financial and other circumstances of each spouse.

There’s no formula to calculate alimony in Nebraska; courts figure alimony on a case by case basis. Read  Understanding and Calculating Alimony in Nebraska  for more details.

How Does Adultery Impact Alimony in Nebraska?

Decades ago, Nebraska considered misconduct during the marriage, including adultery, when deciding whether to award a spouse alimony. Since Nebraska adopted “no-fault” divorces in 1972, however, courts can’t consider bad behavior during the marriage when determining alimony. Courts can only consider whether one party deserves to be supported with alimony based on their present financial circumstances and the roles of the spouses during the marriage.

Alimony in Nebraska also includes money paid from one spouse to the other to help pay legal fees for the divorce case. Payment of attorney’s fees is also not affected by adultery.

Alimony typically ends when either spouse dies or the supported spouse remarries. In some cases, if the supported spouse begins living with another person in a romantic relationship and the supported spouse’s financial situation is improved, a court can decide to end alimony at that time.

What Else Does Adultery Impact?

When Nebraska switched from “fault” divorces to “no-fault” divorces, it eliminated the requirement to blame the unsuccessful marriage on one spouse or the other. As a result, Nebraska courts tend not to make decisions in the divorce based on adultery. Adultery doesn’t affect child custody or visitation, unless it’s done in a manner that negatively affects the children. Adultery also does not affect the division of a couple’s assets and debts except to compensate one spouse for the other spouse spending money on an affair.

Get more information about the divorce process in Nebraska. Read Divorce Basics in Nebraska for more details.


If you have additional questions about alimony and adultery in Nebraska, contact an experienced family law attorney in your area.

To read the full text of the law on alimony in Nebraska, see the  Nebraska Revised Statutes §42-365.

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