JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- It's a disturbing trend divorce lawyers say they're seeing more and more, specifically around the holidays: people discovering that their spouse is cheating on them.
"Everyone feels like they have to reach out to each other on the holidays. And if you're not seeing the other person in your life, they might say more than happy holidays, but a little more than that," said Attorney Janet Johnson.
Johnson said finding out about infidelity is always painful. But the trend of people finding out about it on the holidays is just sad.
"Everyone is at home, so if the cell phone is sitting out there, everyone is going to see it. Or the Facebook or the computer," she said.
But she said finding out about cheating alone won't make a difference in the money you could get out of the divorce if it goes all the way to court.
That's because Florida is a no-fault divorce state.
So unless you can prove your husband or wife used money from the marital account, then you don't have to a case to get money from the settlement.
"If you get a text from your girlfriend, that your wife happens to see, that says 'I love the necklace,' that could end up being a legal problem in divorce court," she said.
There are a handful of states, like North Carolina, and South Dakota where you could sue the person your spouse cheated with, but that is not the case in Florida.
"The case law is pretty clear in Florida. You could pretty much be the worst spouse in the world and unless you're taking money from the family, it doesn't matter," she said.
Johnson said you would also need to show a pattern of indiscretions, so you would need text messages from more than just one day.
First Coast News