Karen A. Covy, J.D. is a divorce attorney and family law mediator in Chicago Illinois . She is the author of When Happily Ever After Ends, How to Survive Your Divorce Emotionally, Financially and Legally (CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform 2015).
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Read the Transcript of this Podcast Below.
Will Dating As Soon As You’re Separated Affect the Outcome of Your Divorce?
Karen A. Covy: Before I talk about the legalities, I just want to say that in the world of bad ideas, this one ranks right up there at the top. The truth is that in most states, marital misconduct, which is dating outside of the marriage in a legal way of speaking, has nothing to do with how property gets divided or how support issues are decided. Unless it somehow has some kind of a negative effect on the children, it really doesn’t play into any legal aspect of your divorce too much. But emotionally it’s a hot button, emotional issue. It’s something that makes going through your divorce one hundred times worse. From a legal perspective, if you are spending marital money on another person that you’re dating, that’s something called dissipation.
The court can look to any money that you spend and say, you used marital money for a non-marital purpose, therefore you have to pay that money back to the marriage before you get divorced. So there can be legal repercussions, but more than legal repercussions, this could have huge emotional repercussions that will play out in a lot of different ways and make your divorce process much more difficult. It’s a really bad idea.