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

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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

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 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.


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