A legal separation agreement allows married couples to discuss and establish the conditions of their separation before applying for formal divorce. In some states, couples have to be legally separated for a particular period of time before they can initiate their divorce process. In some situations, couples may legally separate without the intention of proceeding with divorce.
Legal separation lawyer can assist you to negotiate terms of a separation which can include finance issues, property division, spousal support, child custody and child support. To ensure that there are no issues or conflicts of interest, it is recommended that each spouse get a legal separation lawyer to represent his or her interest.
As soon as the terms of separation have been established, the legal separation lawyers can prepare a draft of separation, review the separation agreement and take care of issues that may come up later on.
Free case review from a legal separation lawyer
Due to the fact that each state has its own laws about property and debt division, it’s significant to check your own state’s laws. These laws can be complicated as a result of the alterations in the couple’s situations. Thus, it is a great idea for each spouse to consult his or her legal separation lawyer for assistance. A family law attorney can assist you to get informed about the differences and costs of a legal separation as opposed to a formal divorce.
A legal separation lawyer may be able to help you get a free initial case review.
Important facts about legal separation
- A trial separation where you and your spouse choose to live apart for an unspecified period of time is different from a legal separation. There are no legal consequences to a short trial separation; however, a protracted separation may affect your property or custody rights. In comparison, a legal separation is rather unlike any of the two situations above. It is recognized by a law court.
- A physical or trial separation, on the other hand has no official legal agreement.
- A legal separation is formalized by a court order or a written agreement which takes care of spousal support, child custody, visitation and support, where ever applicable.
- It differs from a divorce or dissolution of marriage and identifies the possibility of the couples re-uniting again. It does not annul the marriage and so the partners are not allowed to re-marry.
- It is compulsory to go through a legal separation before proceeding with a divorce. However, some states make provisions for couples who are legally separated to transform their separation agreement to a divorce action, if they deem fit.
- With a legal separation, the parties are still married. The court order merely stipulates the rights and duties of a couple as they are still married, although living apart.
During the proceedings for legal separation, the court takes the following decision as it would do in divorce proceedings:
The separation maintenance includes spouse and child support, but termed differently to differentiate it from divorce procedures. The paper work for separation maintenance are regularly prepared and filed by a legal separation lawyer through a process known as a “motion pending litigation”.
What the court decides that either party will get, affects what would be allotted to them if they eventually decide to go for divorce. Separation maintenance must include things like child custody, child visitation and how the couple’s wealth is shared between them.
The factors that determine how the wealth of the couple is shared during legal separation and divorce are based on the situation of the couple in question and their connections/relation to such properties.
To file your papers for a legal separation follow the processes below:
- Get a legal separation lawyer to help you with the process
- Fulfill the residency conditions of the state in which you wish to file for separation.
- Establish ground rules on custody of your child, child support, visitation rights, spousal maintenance, property division, assets and debt.
- Notarize the separation agreement with the signatures of each party to the marriage.