Names, email addresses, credit card information, billing addresses and more for over 36,000,000 registered users have been released on the internet by the Ashley Madison Hackers. While many of the registered accounts may belong to single users who arguably have nobody at home to answer to, millions of married men and women surely are experiencing raging anxiety as information from this “hack” becomes public information.
Setting aside the potential “criminality” of the hacker’s actions and the “Karma” for this exposure to cheating spouses, this much is clear – millions of married men and women have been trolling the internet to confirm whether their spouse is a registered user of Ashley Madison. So where will this all lead?
1. Men and women who suspect their spouse of cheating should perform his or her “due diligence” in checking credit card and bank statements to determine whether Ashley Madison charges appear. They will then compare the charges to a timeline of his/her spouse’s activities. Does the registration with Ashley Madison concur with the random “business trip” their spouse in New York or some other location.
2. At a minimum, the leak of this information will lead to some very uncomfortable conversations at home regarding the alleged infidelity and state of the couple’s marriage.
3. Regardless of whether you are the spouse suspected of being on the website, both parties should schedule a consultation with a New Jersey Divorce Attorney to understand his or her legal rights should either party pursue a divorce. Here is my recent article/blog providing 10 Criteria to consider in How to Choose a Divorce Lawyer.
4. Marriage Counselors will experience a substantial increase in activity for spouse’s interested in trying to work through the alleged infidelity and marital issues in a therapeutic setting.
5. Divorce Attorneys should realize an increase in business over the Ashley Madison Hack. While the discovery of one’s spouse probably is not the cause of the deterioration of a marriage, it will bring all of the bad history to light and make a couple address their issues head on. As a Divorce Attorney, I am frequently asked “What leads to Divorce?” It is interesting that most people assume it is cheating and extramarital affairs. In my experience, I have found that the affair is usually never what leads to the breakdown of a marriage. Although by the time many spouses retain my services to start a divorce action one or both parties has a boyfriend/girlfriend, it is rarely the driving force behind the divorce. The affair or new relationship generally followed a bad marriage that started to come apart because of, by way of limited example, financial issues, how to raise children or one party not being committed to parenting, a drug or alcohol addiction, etc.