Can You Live With Someone While Separated?

A change in your marital relationship status, such as a pending separation or divorce, naturally elicits many questions. Some of those questions pertain to where each spouse should or will live during the separation. For example, you may have heard that the residency of each spouse can impact their eligibility for a no-fault divorce or even who gets to keep the marital home or receives custody of the children. You may have also heard varying information about living with someone while separated. It’s imperative that you receive reliable and accurate answers to all of these types of questions when it comes to separation and divorce. The best source to receive such answers is from an experienced Maryland family law attorney.

Is It Adultery to Live With Someone Before Your Divorce Is Finalized?

Since there is no legal separation status in Maryland, the question becomes not so much if you are living with someone else but if you are committing adultery. Generally, if your new relationship started after the breakdown in your marriage had already occurred and you or your spouse had already filed for divorce, it won’t be counted against you. However, even being in a relationship at any point during the divorce process before it is finalized can be counted as adultery. If it is, your soon-to-be ex-spouse is entitled to obtain information about your romantic relationship and use any evidence of adultery against you in court—which can include you living with a different romantic partner.

In some cases, the other spouse can call the new partner as a witness in the case so that the court learns about the duration and nature of their relationship. Additionally, your spouse can claim that you are spending money in your new relationship, thereby dissipating marital funds.

This type of prying can be stressful and humiliating, and sometimes it’s best to avoid any possibility that you may face it. Suppose you don’t want the looming potential that you will have to disclose this type of highly personal information or have it negatively impact your divorce or life moving forward. In that case, it’s probably best not to get involved in a new relationship, including living with someone else until your divorce is finalized. Speaking with a seasoned family law attorney about the specifics of your situation can help clarify things further.

Can You Keep Living With Your Spouse While Separated?

Maryland law doesn’t require you to live separately from your spouse while going through a divorce. Therefore, you have the option to remain in the marital home with your spouse while the divorce process is ongoing. In a Maryland mutual consent divorce, you aren’t required to live separately to get a divorce. However, if you file under the fault grounds of excessive cruelty, adultery, or “constructive desertion,” you are required to live in different parts of the house, have separate beds, and abstain from having marital relations.

Contact a Skilled Maryland Family Law Attorney Today

If you have questions about your living arrangements, new relationships, or any other legal aspects of divorce and separation in Maryland, be sure to seek the skilled counsel of a qualified Maryland family law attorney as soon as possible. An attorney can provide you with the trustworthy information you need to make the best decisions for you and your family.

Contact our office today.