If you’re on the road to divorce, you may be wondering, “Is it okay for me to date before my case is finalized?" If you’re asking this question, you have plenty of company. Many of our clients ask us if they can start dating before their divorce is official.
Every state handles adultery and dating during divorce differently. Some states consider dating during divorce, even after the married couple has split, as adultery. As such, dating during a divorce can have negative consequences for the spouse who is dating. Where does Texas stand on the issue of dating before a divorce is final?
Texas Frowns on Dating During Divorce
Texas is generally one of the states which frowns on dating during a divorce. Of course, every case is different, each county is different, and each judge may view a case differently. If a spouse starts having sexual relations with someone other than their husband or wife while they’re still married and the divorce is pending, the family courts can consider the extramarital relations “adultery” for property distribution and spousal support (alimony) purposes.
When a spouse is seeking spousal support during their divorce, the court may consider adultery on behalf of both spouses before arriving at a decision. If a spouse committed adultery and they’re seeking alimony, the court could deny their request.
On the other hand, the court may also consider adultery on behalf of the spouse who would be paying alimony and whether their infidelity contributed to the breakup of the marriage.
Texas courts can still consider a spouse having committed adultery even if it took place after the spouses separated and started living apart under separate roofs. So, should you date during your divorce? It’s generally not recommended because of the risks outlined above. Because every case is different, it is important to seek legal advice from an attorney who can analyze your specific circumstances.
Even if you’re not seeking alimony, it could still anger your spouse and turn an uncontested divorce into a contested one, which could lead to increased legal fees and a trial. If you have any other questions or concerns about dating before your divorce is final, contact Hunt Law Firm, PLLC.