Why Adultery Is Considered Grounds For Divorce + Affect in Canada

Why Adultery Is Considered Grounds For Divorce

There are many reasons a couple may choose to end their marriage, but none is more talked about in popular culture than adultery. British Columbia residents may already be aware that cheating on a partner is considered grounds for divorce in Canada. However, many people have questions they are afraid to ask about the specifics of how adultery is handled in a divorce capacity.

Some people believe an affair must be consistent over a period of time to constitute grounds for divorce, but this is not the case. According to the federal Divorce Act, even a single instance of adultery can be considered divorce-worthy, so long as it occurs or begins before the petition for divorce is filed. While some spouses might choose to forgive an individual instance of impropriety, the option remains to file on these grounds.

Another major question is that of proof: how much evidence is required to prove adultery in a court of law? Generally speaking, hard evidence in the form of photos or film is not necessary for a court to recognize a divorce petition, but it does need to be convinced there is a preponderance of other evidence to suggest infidelity. Video evidence is not necessary, but simple suspicion is not enough either.

Obviously, adultery brings with it a tremendous amount of complicated emotion and can lead to divorce. However, here in British Columbia, a great deal of support exists for couples who choose to end their marriages as a result of an affair or a host of other reasons. If both spouses seek out experienced legal counsel for themselves, the muddy waters of divorce can be navigated more clearly.


Stuart Zukerman

Stuart Zukerman, a graduate of the University of British Columbia, has over 32 years of experience in litigation with a focus on Family Law, Personal Injury, Wrongful Dismissal claims, and Collaborative Divorce & Mediation. He has extensive trial experience in divorce, child custody, spousal support, asset division, and ICBC injury claims. As an accredited Family Law Mediator, he helps resolve disputes without court intervention. Stuart has also authored papers on family law and lectured at CLE courses.