Why a legal separation instead of divorce?

There are many reasons couples choose to legally separate instead of pursuing a contested divorce. Oftentimes, one or both spouses are not emotionally ready to end their marriage and a legal separation keeps the parties legally married so that certain benefits remain available to a spouse. Other times, religious beliefs, financial considerations or children may make legal separation more desirable. A divorce is a final determination that ends the marriage. A legal separation keeps the marriage intact, but all issues as if in a divorce are decided and ordered accordingly.

No matter the reasons, a legal separation will allow each spouse to be treated as a separate financial individual, protect each spouse from the debts of the other and allow couples to live their lives separate from one another. But it must be known and warned that legally separate parties cannot remarry unless their marriage has been dissolved and their divorce final.

At Soloman Law, we recognize terminating a marriage is a difficult decision to come to for most couples. Tensions and emotions run high, and the thought of moving forward in life alone can be overwhelming for both partners. For couples struggling with the decision to divorce, opting for a legal separation versus permanent dissolution of the marriage may be desirable. Let us educate and explain the benefits and limitations of a legal separation versus a divorce.

What is legal separation?

When marriages become rocky, many couples choose to separate instead of filing for divorce. While it is not necessary to legally separate, filing for a temporary separation order will provide you with legal protection during the separation period. Unlike a divorce, which has a 90 day waiting period, a legal separation can be entered immediately. Also, after a final legal separation order is entered, either party can seek a final divorce after 6 months from the final legal separation decree.

Similar to a divorce decree, a decree of legal separation dictates each spouse's rights and responsibilities regarding:

  • Property division
  • Debt management
  • Spousal support
  • Custody and visitation
  • Child support

The legal separation process

At Soloman Law, we help clients during every stage of the legal separation process. We evaluate marital property to ensure clients get a fair portion of assets, and work hard to ensure custody and visitation agreements protect our clients' parent-child bonds.

To schedule a consultation with one of our legal separation lawyers, contact our office today at 206-355-4555. Together, we will help you move forward to a brighter future.

Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you.