One of the most common questions new client’s ask is “Can I start dating now that I have filed?” My usual response is that’s not going to preclude the other side from bringing it up, involving your new relationship in the suit, or alleging it’s been going on prior to the filing. The Dallas Court of Appeals case below shows the risk of this.

In re M.H., No. 05-19-00133-CV, 2020 WL 5104965 (Tex.App.—Dallas 2020, no pet. h.) Wife requested a disproportionate share of the estate. At trial she testified that Husband was an abusive alcoholic in addition to having an affair after their separation. The Court awarded her a disproportionate share of the estate based on fault in the break-up of the marriage and adultery. Husband appealed, but the appellate Court confirmed that adultery does not have to be pre-separation for the Court to grant relief based on adultery.