I agree on all this. Your wife told you she was leaving, and left the marital home. That is the separation date and unless you intend to reconcile, tell her that she is not allowed back in the home. Change the locks. She may not sign a lease if she is staying with a friend. If you know without a doubt that she is continuing the affair, find proof if you can. This is one of the reasons that Divorce from Bed & Board are filed. She left the marital home after telling you of her intentions to separate due to this affair. If you let her come back to the marital home, you are condoning the affair.
Contact her in writing and tell her that she is not allowed back at the home without your permission. E-mail or write a letter. If you call, make sure to record the conversation. Tell her that you are changing the locks. Tell her that she can come to the home X date & time and pick up her clothing and other belongings. She can at that time take whatever furniture you decide to let her have. If she has no way to retrieve anything but the clothing and belongings then the rest can be put into the separation agreement that you are having drawn up. Let her know that as soon as she is settled at a permanent address, that she provides to you, she can keep your daughter overnight, but until that time she will need to return her at Xpm during the week.
I would definitely make sure that the “No overnights of the opposite sex while the child is in the home” thing be put into the agreement.
As far as the abandonment thing goes, don5327 is correct. It will help with the fact that you currently have primary custody and that she has made no motions to change that situation.
It’s my belief that if she left you to continue the affair, the child and where she stands finacially in regards to the marital debt and assets are the last thing on her mind. This is a plus for you in that you can mention to her that the agreement needs to be signed before she should go public with her boyfriend.
Document, document, document. Everything that is said, all amounts spent on the child, or payments made on credit debt or vehicles…insurance anything that you are doing right now, keep records of it.
Your most important concern right now is your daughter. Your wife has left you in the best position to be one of the few fathers that get primary custody. Please take care of yourself during this. Eat, whether you feel like it or not. Get enough sleep, even if you need to get medication for it. Talk to someone if you can. A doctor, a counselor, a pastor, a friend or family member. Find someone on your side that you can run things by whether it’s about raising your daughter or something in the agreement. Do not go to her family or friends. Keep in mind that while the attorney can advise you legally about where you stand, he will not have to live with the outcome of this. No one else can tell you what to do in every situation. Your child is going to be in the middle of a divorce. She is not going to understand why her mother is not around. Do some “extra” things with her so that you and she can bond. This is when she will need you the most. Hang in there. It does get easier…