Dating while separated


#1

If I start dating while separated is that still considered Alienation of Affection or Criminal Conversation? It’s only been a few months but I have been seeing someone since a few weeks after separating and it’s getting serious. We are already talking about getting married too. Can you get engaged while married or is it just getting married has to wait until divorce?

We have no settlement agreement in place and have two children that she is currently taking care of (I see them a few times per week and every other weekend). How much legal trouble can I get in for getting engaged while technically married?


#2

Adultery is still a crime in the state of North Carolina. For your spouse to go after your partner for alienation of affection, she has to prove that there was love and affection between you two. The only requirement for a claim of criminal conversation is that she had sex with a married person. There is no law that specifically disallows you to be engaged before your divorce is finalized.


#3

Thanks and my spouse has been dating as well so it seems that the criminal conversation piece could be considered a wash.

While getting engaged is legal could a judge possibly use that against me when it comes down to the divorce as far as splitting up assets and assigning alimony or is more of a public opinion thing that anything? I am sure people would see it as tacky but could a judge decide “since you are engaged and moving on with your life I will give your spouse more money than the situation would normally warrant” or anything like that?


#4

Alimony is based on need versus ability to pay. When dividing assets, the judge will use all the factors in the statute to determine what equates to equitable distribution in your case. There is a catch all factor, but so in theory, yes, it could be used against you, but I have never heard of someone’s engagement being used as a factor.