Yes, You Can Date While Separated in Florida, But Here’s the Catch
Unlike other states, Florida does not prohibit dating other people while your divorce is pending. However, from a legal perspective, doing so may not be the smartest decision.
It is understandable, for someone who has been exclusive with his or her spouse or partner for years or decades, the temptation to jump back into the dating pool may be too strong.
Is Dating While Your Divorce is Pending Legal in Florida?
But is dating while going through a divorce legal in Florida? Yes, dating while separated is not unlawful in Florida, but just because it is not prohibited does not necessarily make it a good idea to start seeing other people soon after the divorce papers are filed.
In fact, dating while the divorce is ongoing could negatively impact the outcome of your divorce or even your child custody case. From a legal standpoint, seeing other people while your divorce is pending may cause animosity between parties and prolong the proceedings.
In the worst-case scenario, dating while separated may cause you to receive less time with your children under a time-sharing plan. In the era of social media, your soon-to-be-former-spouse will quickly find out about your new relationship, so lying about this fact is not an option either.
3 Reasons Why Dating While Separated Could Hurt Your Divorce Case
You should consider these three things if you are thinking about dating while your divorce is ongoing:
Jumping back into the dating pool before your divorce is final can increase animosity between parties. Even though both parties realize that their marriage is about to come to an end – not to mention that their feelings have subsided – jealousy may flare up if one party starts a new relationship.
The other party may feel that their spouse has moved on so quickly because their marriage meant nothing to the “dating” spouse. In the worst-case scenario, that spouse may begin suspecting that their partner was unfaithful during the marriage.
Although adultery does not impact the outcome of the divorce in Florida, the feeling of jealousy and increased tensions between spouses can make it more difficult to negotiate or use mediation to finalize a divorce.
Impact on the Time-Sharing Plan
Time-sharing plans are created based upon what is in the child’s best interests. If you started dating while separated, the other parent might argue that your new relationship is negatively affecting your children or that you are exposing your kids to inappropriate situations, especially if the new partner spends nights or even moved into the house where the children are present.
In other cases, the other parent may argue that your new romantic partner treats your children poorly. If the judge sides with your spouse and agrees that your new relationship is adversely affecting your children or your parenting abilities, the other parent may get more time with the kids.
Bad Decision-Making Abilities
Also, a new relationship could negatively impact your decision-making abilities during the divorce. The new relationship can feel too exciting to the point where you are eager to agree to anything simply to get the divorce finalized.
The problem is that the decisions you make during the divorce process carry long-lasting consequences, and most of them cannot be modified later on. That is why you should be smart during your divorce proceedings. Speak with our Orlando divorce attorneys to become more intelligent and ensure that your post-separation decisions do not have a negative impact on the outcome of your divorce. Contact Donna Hung Law Group to discuss your circumstances. Call at 407-999-0099 to receive a consultation.