Can a Judge admit evidence in a divorce trial outside the dates of marriage?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can a Judge admit evidence in a divorce trial outside the dates of marriage?

I am in a divorce WA, the Judge allowed testimony and evidence
presented by Petitioner I am Respondent outside the dates of Marriage
July 25th, 2003-February 7th, 2016, the date of separation. All evidence
presented were post separation, nasty voicemails, texts, and emails.
Nothing was presented during the marriage dates because there was
nothing. The Judge based his decision on this evidence only. He awarded
spousal support to the Petitioner, she makes 11,000 per month, I make
1195 per month at this time. He ordered 1000 per month to be paid by
me. I am Pro Se, my wife took all of my savings, and I cannot afford an atty.
I am prepared to file an appeal.

Asked on February 19, 2018 under Family Law, Washington


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

The rules of evidence allow any "relevant" evidence--that is, any evidence which tends to prove or disprove some fact or facts important to the case--to be admitted and considered, so the issue is not whether the evidence was from outside your marriage, but whether it was in fact relevant. You can potentially appeal on the basis that judge was is in error to consider this evidence relevant (as well as on any other bases you believe you have, due to potential errors by the judge or in the case), but the mere fact that it was from outside your marriage does not automatically exclude it.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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