Legal Separation FAQ
Legal separation is a good solution if you need time away from your partner but aren’t yet ready for divorce. So, here’s what you need to know about a legal separation.
The Similarities Between Legal Separation & Divorce
A divorce and a legal separation proceed almost exactly the same way. Therefore, you will decide how to divide property and what your child custody arrangements will be, if you have children.
The Differences Between Legal Separation & Divorce
A legal separation may allow you to stay on your spouse’s health coverage or pension. If you and your spouse reconcile your relationship, the legal separation may be dismissed. On the contrary, in a divorce, you and your ex-spouse need to get remarried if you decide to stay together.
Legal Separation Requirements
Before obtaining a legal separation through the California court system, you must first be living apart due to differences within the marriage. You can, however, be considered separated without involving the courts by living apart. If you choose to go this route, you won’t have a final decree that outlines the terms of the separation. In many cases, it’s more beneficial to have your separation on file.
You Can Still Get a Divorce
If you and your spouse decide that separating is best for your family, you can proceed to a traditional divorce. If legal separation agreements are drawn up and the arrangements are working, they will likely be carried over to your divorce.
Do You Have to Separate Before Getting a Divorce?
A legal separation is not a prerequisite to a divorce. You can choose to divorce without a legal separation from your spouse.
Can You File a Separation Without the Help of an Attorney?
A legal separation can take place without an attorney, and you can even draw up your own agreement and submit it to the court. However, this is ill advised, because it’s easy to miss important things that could have a big impact on your separation.
At the Law Offices of Barbara E. McNamara, we can help you discover if legal separation is right for your family and can walk you through the process of obtaining a separation. Contact us today for a consultation to discuss your unique needs by calling (714) 740-2542.
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