In order to establish a reconciliation which will break the continuity of a period of separation or constitute a condonation or forgiveness of past behavior, the overall circumstances must show a mutual intention by the parties to voluntarily resume their marital relationship.
The parties separated in February, 1973, this suit was filed in February, 1975, and trial was held in May, 1976. After the initial separation Mrs. Millon lived in an apartment with her children. She admitted having sexual intercourse with her husband during this period on about six occasions, but asserted she submitted to the 260-pound spouse involuntarily and under force. She denied ever inviting her husband to the apartment or discussing reconciliation with him and declared that he gained entrance into the apartment when the door was unlocked or the children let him in. She had called the police on several occasions.
Had the parties reconciled with the contemplation of controlling state statutes during the period of separation?
The Court affirmed the decision of the trial court that there was no commencement of any marital relationship, certainly not a meaningful one.” Reconciliation is the voluntary resumption or reestablishment of the relationship which formerly existed between the parties. While sexual intercourse constitutes strong evidence that the relationship has been resumed, proof of one act or of several isolated acts of sexual intercourse is not necessarily conclusive of the issue of reconciliation. Here, there was considerable circumstantial evidence to support a conclusion that the parties did not intend a reconciliation.