Marital separation and dating
If you find that you just can’t wait until your divorce is final to start dating again, this article provides a few “do’s and don’ts” of dating before you are divorced.Unfortunately, there is more that you shouldn’t do than should, but first let’s clarify what is meant by “dating.” Legally, “dating” means one-on-one social contact with another person.There is no distinction between platonic contacts and ones that are romantic or sexual, although from a practical standpoint, the romantic/sexual relationships are the ones that draw scrutiny and cause complications.The reason divorce lawyers counsel against dating while the divorce is pending, even if separated, is that it has the potential to increase both the cost and the stress of the divorce trial. Judges, however, rarely punish someone who begins dating – sexually or otherwise – once they have physically separated from their spouse.Even so, the presence of someone new, particularly when paraded in front of the spouse and/or children, can enrage the soon-to-be ex, and also create the suspicion that the relationship began as an “affair” before the separation.The innocent new friend can be deposed by the other side’s lawyer (that is, asked questions that are taken under oath and recorded by a stenographer or even videotaped) and subpoenaed to testify at trial.That's probably why so many divorcing people have questions about sex and new relationships.
Trial separations also involve a physical move, but tend to be longer-term than brief separations.
You CAN see people, of course, but use your best judgment. Again, once you've signed a separation agreement, it's less risky–but it's still adultery (and therefore still a misdemeanor in Virginia) until you've got that Final Decree of Divorce with the judge's signature on it. I would say, however, that if you would be angry with your husband for having his new girlfriend over while the children are there, then it would probably be a good idea if you didn't do it either.