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The Divorce Encyclopedia
Cause-in-Fact


Term Definition Cause-in-Fact - the specific stimulus for an incident, without which the incident would not have happened.
Application in Divorce Also called causation, courts sometimes express the cause-in-fact in terms of a but for rule: an injury to a person would not have happened but for the negligence of another.

A chain of episodes of domestic violence may end in a cause-in-fact that creates a cause for (or) of action.

In a fault divorce one must present grounds for divorce which must be substantiated with evidence in order for a marriage to be terminated. The grounds for divorce are essentially the cause-in-fact for the ending a marriage. For example, a man commits adultery and had he not committed adultery the marriage would still be in place. The adulterer may make a case that had his spouse not deprived him of sexual relations for several years, he would have never committed adultery. In this viewpoint, the cause-in-fact would be the wife depriving sexual relations.

See Proximate Cause.

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