In North Carolina, adultery affects the award of alimony differently depending on whether the adultery is committed by the supporting spouse or by the dependent spouse. If the dependent spouse committed adultery during the marriage and before the date of separation, then the court is prohibited from awarding alimony to the dependent spouse unless the supporting spouse also committed adultery. If the supporting spouse committed adultery during the marriage and before the date of separation, then the court must award alimony to the dependent spouse, unless the dependent spouse also committed adultery. If both spouses committed adultery, then the court can consider all of the circumstances and award alimony based on its own discretion. In the event that the adultery is known by, and ultimately forgiven by, the innocent spouse, the adultery is not something that will be considered by the court. The act of the innocent spouse of forgiving the marital misconduct is referred to as condonation.
In the context of a post-separation support claim, the adultery of a dependent spouse does not bar any claims for post-separation support that the dependent spouse may have.