Not Sure You're Ready For A Divorce? 5 Things You Should Consider Before Choosing A Legal Separation

Posted on: 18 May 2015

You're facing marital problems. Now you're trying to decide whether divorce or legal separation is the next step you should take. While legal separation is an option that's available to you, it might not be your best option. Before you decide on a separation, you should sit down and discuss the matter with a divorce attorney. There are some drawbacks attached to legal separation. Here are just a few of the potential drawbacks that you might want to consider.

Increased Living Expenses

If your personal income isn't enough for you to live on, you may end up with financial problems associated with a separation. Before you decide to separate prior to divorce, be sure that you have enough income to provide for your own living expenses, especially if you won't be receiving spousal support during the separation.

May Simply Delay the Inevitable

If you're sure that you want to divorce, a separation may simply delay the inevitable. During your separation, you'll be dealing with the pain of your separation, as well as the emotions involved with your possible divorce. If divorce is the final goal, you might want to eliminate the separation and proceed with your divorce.

Could Cause Problems with Property Settlement

If you own a home with your spouse, you should never move out unless you absolutely have to. Once you move out of the home, it may be more difficult to obtain the home as part of your divorce settlement. Moving out of the marital house shows that you have enough money to live elsewhere.

If you have children, and you want custody of them, you need to continue living in the home. This is particularly important if you'd thought about leaving them in the home until after the divorce. In most cases, judges prefer to keep children in their own home. They also tend to award custody to the parent who remained in the home with the children.

May Give Your Spouse Grounds for Divorce

If you live in a state that recognizes fault in divorce proceedings, you may need your spouse's agreement before you can safely move out of your home. In states that recognize fault, moving out of your home without your spouse's agreement to separate, may give your spouse grounds to claim abandonment. If you're not sure whether your state recognizes at-fault divorces, you should discuss the matter with your attorney before moving out of your home.

When Separation Is the Only Option

Some states require a separation before you can legally file for divorce. If your state requires a legal separation, you will have to have a formal separation from your spouse. Your attorney will be able to help you understand the laws in your state.

It's never easy to end a marriage. Sometimes a legal separation is the best way to go. However, there are drawbacks associated with a legal separation. Before you decide to separate, you should discuss your options with an attorney. Contact a local attorney, like Kolker Law Offices PC.