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Dating During Divorce in Texas: To Do or Not to Do?

In Texas, divorcing couples often face varied challenges, from enduring long-term marital difficulties to realizing a mismatch shortly after marriage. The state’s ‘no-fault’ divorce policy simplifies the process, eliminating the need to specify a reason in your divorce petition. This approach primarily accommodates conflicts of personality as the leading cause for separation.

However, specific circumstances like adultery can significantly impact divorce proceedings. Today’s discussion at the Law Office of Bryan Fagan delves into this issue and explores the nuances of dating during divorce. Understanding these factors is crucial for navigating your divorce journey effectively.

Adultery Can Impact Your Divorce Case Significantly

If your spouse commits adultery, you, as a Texas citizen, can request not only a divorce but also a disproportionate share of the community estate you own together. Let’s clarify what “disproportionate” and “community estate” mean.

Disproportionate refers to simply a greater than fifty percent share of the community estate. The community estate encompasses property you and your spouse acquired during your marriage. In Texas, the law presumes all property as community property unless you or your spouse prove otherwise, making it subject to division in divorce.

This is the case because the state of Texas acknowledges that sometimes infidelity can not only be a breaking of the bond of trust between you and your spouse, but it can also be a breaking of the financial bond between you and your spouse. For example, if your spouse took out sums of money from your joint bank account to pay for a trip for him and his paramour to take, this will affect how a judge awards the remaining portion of your community estate in the divorce case.

When Does Dating Become Adultery?

Texas law recognizes that infidelity can breach both trust and financial bonds in a marriage. For instance, if your spouse withdraws money from your joint account for a trip with their paramour, this action influences the judge’s decision on dividing your community estate in the divorce. This means that if you were to start dating another person during your divorce, a court could consider this to be infidelity, and it could trigger the sort of analysis we just went through regarding a division of your community state in a manner that does not favor you.

In any case, a court may require reimbursement to the community estate for any funds your spouse spent on their paramour, even if it doesn’t lead to a disproportionate division of property.

Dating During Divorce: Stay Away Until the Ink Has Dried on Your Final Decree of Divorce

Dating During Divorce in Texas: To Do or Not to Do?

Your divorce case will not be fun. You probably already knew this, but I am here to confirm that suspicion for you. No matter what circumstances you have apparent in your life, it will not be easy to go through your divorce. This is true even for spouses that get along reasonably well and do not have a ton of simmering anger or resentment towards the other under the surface of their case.

If you consider whether or not you should begin a relationship during your divorce, I am here to argue against doing so. The challenges that you will encounter as a result of entering into a dating relationship with another person during your divorce will cause entirely avoidable issues. While you may feel emotionally ready to start dating, you may not be. Secondly, no matter if you are or are not, a judge will not look favorably upon your doing so- especially if you have children.

Through my years of representing people in divorces, I have learned that it is more common than you would think for people to casually mention that they are dating someone even before their divorce has begun. While you may think that your circumstances allow a relationship to continue into a divorce case, I can promise you that they do not.

What Does Your Spouse Know?

On the other hand, our office had represented many spouses who are fully aware that their husband or wife has been carrying on an extramarital affair for some time before either person became severe about moving towards a divorce. If you and your spouse have been separated and involved in a love triangle, this arrangement, while manageable before, will create issues in your divorce.

These problems don’t just mean your spouse will feel upset and angry; these emotions will likely lead to a longer, more contentious divorce case. Translation: extramarital relationship = anger = lengthier and more contested divorce = much more money spent on your divorce than is probably necessary.

What Do You Need to Tell Your Divorce Attorney About a Spouse’s Relationship?

Whatever you know about your spouse’s relationship with another person needs to be disclosed to your attorney, no matter how embarrassing it may be. Don’t think that something isn’t relevant to your discussion. Let your attorney make that determination. How much money has your spouse spent on this person? Do you have bank account records and transactions to back up what you are saying? If you have limited access to this information, you can request documents on these subjects in discovery.

A Judge May Not Be That Harsh, but Your Spouse Will

Dating During Divorce in Texas: To Do or Not to Do?

Keep in mind that very few divorce cases in Texas go to trial. This means that the judge in your case will likely never make any decisions regarding subject matter associated with your or your spouse’s dating activities during your marriage. When you attempt to settle your case outside of court, you will be asking the person who was wronged by your actions to settle your case fairly. I think you can tell that this will not be easy, and your spouse will have little to no desire to work with you if you have wronged them by dating another person during your marriage.

The bottom line is that the person you want to have a relationship with during your marriage will likely be just as available and interested after your divorce has concluded. Do not add fuel to the fire of your divorce by engaging with them while your case is pending. Your life will be made immeasurably more complicated by doing so.

Questions about dating during divorce? Contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC

The attorneys with the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, PLLC, have had the privilege to represent a wide variety of clients in our practice of family law in Texas. No matter your particular circumstances, we have the experience you need to be well represented in your divorce case. To learn more about your case and our office, please do not hesitate to contact us today. We offer free of charge consultations with our licensed family law attorneys.

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  1. Married but dating another person during a Texas Divorce?
  2. Adultery and its consequences in a Texas divorce
  3. Does NCIS Investigate Adultery?
  4. Does Adultery Impact Alimony in a Texas Divorce?
  5. How Adultery May Affect Property Division and Texas Divorce Proceedings
  6. Cheaters never prosper: Adultery and affairs
  7. Is Adultery a Crime in Texas?
  8. My Spouse Has Accused Me of Adultery in my Texas Divorce and I Haven’t
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  10. Sex, Lies, Rock-and-roll, and Adultery in a Texas Divorce
  11. The benefits of not immediately introducing your children to your new love interest after divorce

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you date someone while going through a divorce in Texas?

Yes, you can date someone while going through a divorce in Texas. Texas is a “no-fault” divorce state, which means you don’t need a specific reason to get divorced, including dating during the divorce process.

Is dating while going through a divorce cheating?

Dating during a divorce may not legally be considered cheating in Texas, but it can complicate the emotional and legal aspects of the divorce. It’s advisable to consult with an attorney and consider the potential consequences.

Can you have a boyfriend while going through a divorce?

You can have a boyfriend while going through a divorce, but it’s essential to understand the potential impact on your divorce proceedings. Consult with a legal expert to ensure you make informed decisions.

Can you date other people while waiting for a divorce?

Yes, you can date other people while waiting for a divorce in Texas. However, be mindful of how it may affect your divorce process and discuss it with your attorney.

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