For some couples, the marriage was “over” long before divorce papers were filed. Even if this is true, does that mean it is okay to date before the divorce is finalized? Most divorce attorneys would advise against dating while a divorce is pending, as it can negatively affect your case and complicate matters with your ex. Even if you are legally separated, you should be aware of the possible consequences and how your new relationship can impact your family.
Here are some things to consider if you want to dive into the dating scene during a divorce:
- How will your children feel? While you may be excited about your new dating partner, your kids may not feel the same way. Some children may see your new boyfriend or girlfriend as a threat, or even as the reason their parents divorced. This can cause feelings of confusion or resentment.
- How will your ex react? If you have a jealous ex, he or she may not react well to the news that you are in a new relationship. Your ex may become uncooperative, unresponsive, or try to make the divorce as ugly as possible. For this reason, it may be a good idea to keep a low-profile or avoid a new relationship until your divorce is done.
- Accusations of adultery: When you date someone new while the divorce is still going on, it may give rise to accusations of adultery. As a no-fault divorce state, California does not require that a party proves fault in a divorce. However, some judges may take adultery into consideration when deciding on issues such as property division, spousal support, and other matters.
- Are you ready for a new relationship? Sometimes after a rough breakup, people move too soon and go for a rebound relationship to help them cope with the loss. But ask yourself if you are emotionally ready for a new relationship. Are you doing it to spite your ex? Are you trying to distract yourself? If you meet the right person and feel ready to date, be upfront about your situation and take it slow until your divorce is done.
There is obviously a lot to think about when you are contemplating dating while a divorce is in progress. Whether you decide to move forward with your new relationship, make sure that you discuss your situation with your divorce attorney and understand how it can impact your case.
Do’s and Don’ts of Dating During Divorce
- DON’T start dating until you and your spouse have separated and are living apart.
- DON’T get pregnant before the divorce is over, as it can complicate and delay your case
- DO make time for your children and be there for them
- DO find a support group to help you deal with any feelings of depression, stress or isolation
Our San Diego Divorce Attorneys Are Here for You
If you are thinking about ending your marriage or have already been served divorce papers, our San Diego divorce lawyers at Cage & Miles, LLP can be there for you. We have helped countless families find effective solutions to their divorce disputes. When you need a caring, compassionate, and dedicated team to walk you through the process, our team is here. Start with a free, confidential divorce consultation with a member of our team.