Determining whether it is okay or not to date while going through a divorce is a personal choice. It is legal to do so, but it could cause more problems than it is worth. Dating during a divorce, especially when children are involved, may only make an already combative process more adversarial. To better understand what is and is not a good idea during divorce, consult an experienced divorce attorney.
Where Could Dating During Divorce Cause Complications?
Dating during a divorce could adversely affect legal matters concerning allocating parental responsibilities, including decision-making and parenting time. A judge could decide that the living environment that the currently dating parent has created may not be suitable for children most of the time. The parent’s new beau may also pose an issue to custodial matters in that they:
- Could be perceived as a relatively unknown entity to the children
- May possess a criminal history that includes violence
- May cause emotional or mental damage to the children by being around
Spending money on an extramarital affair could also cost you in the division of property. The court may feel that the money being spent is not yours to spend, considering it is marital property and not personal property. As you are not yet officially divorced, all assets, including petty cash for date nights, are considered marital property. The court can choose to have you reimburse the other parent in the divorce for the expenses or else take a reduced share of the divided assets.
Should you choose to move in with your new partner, you could take a hit to any potential spousal support you would have otherwise been awarded. Normally, the spouse who earns the lesser amount in the relationship can request spousal support to maintain their standard of living until said spouse can sustain themselves. However, a judge could see your new partner as a support system and possibly terminate any spousal support to which you might have been entitled.
Think of the Children
Minor children may be easily confused by adding a new adult to the household that is not their parent. This could cause psychological complications and turmoil in the household. It is possible they may begin to feel neglected, retreat in their grief, or begin to act out. Understand that your children are going through the divorce as well, and their well-being should be a top priority. A judge will hand down decisions concerning your children to be in their best interests.
Consult a DuPage County, IL Divorce Attorney
It may be in the best interest of everyone involved if you hold off on dating while a divorce is underway. You may have moved on but are opening yourself up to a potential legal disaster by diving into the dating pool too early. Consult a Hinsdale, IL divorce lawyer if you feel you need any advice on how to navigate the divorce proceedings safely. The [[title]] is available to those in need of legal assistance in every step of their divorce. Contact our office at [[phone]] for a free consultation today.