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Can I Date During a Divorce?

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Can I Date During a Divorce?

After spending long months or even years in an unhappy marriage, you may be eager to begin dating again once you finally make the difficult decision to get a divorce. Unfortunately, while there is nothing wrong with wanting companionship, dating before your divorce is finalized can negatively impact your rights in Illinois divorce proceedings. Find out some of the different reasons why it is a bad idea. 

How Dating Impacts Legal Rights in Divorce

When getting a divorce in Illinois, it is important to recognize that you are still legally married to your spouse up until the time a final divorce order is issued by the judge in your case. This means that dating or beginning any type of romantic relationship could technically be considered adultery. Previously, this was considered fault grounds for divorce. 

In the aftermath of changes in the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Statutes several years ago, the only grounds for divorce are now irreconcilable differences. However, the fact you are dating during divorce could still be used against you by your spouse and could impact your rights in regards to the following: 

  • Marital property and asset division: If your spouse can show you depleted assets due to an extramarital relationship, it could jeopardize your rights in a property settlement. 
  • Spousal maintenance and support: if you make less than your spouse, you may be entitled to alimony, otherwise known as spousal maintenance. Unfortunately, claims of adultery could make you ineligible. 
  • Parenting time: While dating may have zero impact on your children, your spouse could use it to portray you in an unfavorable light in child custody proceedings. 

Why it is a Good Idea to Delay Dating Until After Your Divorce

Dating while going through a divorce can have major impacts on your rights in the Cook County Domestic Relations Court. However, there are other good reasons to delay it until after you receive a final divorce order: 

  • It is a distraction: Divorce proceedings can impact your rights for years into the future. Dating during this time could distract you from practical matters that need to be addressed. 
  • It interferes with making other adjustments: Divorce involves major adjustments. Dating interferes and can delay divorce recovery. 
  • It prevents you from healing: Even if you and your spouse were on poor terms prior to your divorce, you still need to grieve. Dating or starting a rebound relationship during divorce can prevent you from taking the time needed to heal. 

Our Cook County Divorce Attorneys are Here to Help

At Andrea Heckman Law, we can help resolve your divorce in the quickest and most effective way possible, allowing you to begin dating and otherwise move on with your life. To request a consultation, call or contact our Cook County divorce attorneys online today.  

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Andrea Heckman

Managing Attorney

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