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Filing for legal separation vs divorce (part 1)

Whatever the reason may be, more often than not I suggest filing for divorce. It is not because I am a sadist and enjoy seeing a once, happily married couple struggle through the painful ending of their relationship. It is because, practically speaking, filing for divorce can be more efficient and cost effective than filing for legal separation. Unless being legally separated is preferable for religious reasons, health insurance coverage, military benefits or other purposes.

The filing of a petition for legal separation or a petition for dissolution legally operate the same way. The separation date in either petition can be designated as the petition's filing date or the physical separation date. Either the date the parties physically separated by residing in different houses or some other defining moment, such as, sleeping in different bedrooms or a verbal discussion signifying the marriage was over.

Both petitions separate property and debts and designate the use of property, such as, who lives in the family home or who gets to drive which car. Either petition also allows for a parenting plan establishing a residential reschedule or legal custody as well as designating child support and/or spousal maintenance (alimony).

This is part one of a two part series of filing for legal separation versus filing for divorce. The next post will discuss the difference between filing for legal separation and divorce and why filing for divorce does not necessarily signify the end of the marriage...as unlikely as that may seem.

AKIONA LAW, PLLC makes the information and materials on this blog available for general informational purposes only. The information provided is not intended to be legal advice. See DISCLAIMER.

Whatever the reason may be, more often than not I suggest filing for divorce. It is not because I am a sadist and enjoy seeing a once, happily married couple struggle through the painful ending of their relationship. It is because, practically speaking, filing for divorce can be more efficient and cost effective than filing for legal separation. Unless being legally separated is preferable for religious reasons, health insurance coverage, military benefits or other purposes.

The filing of a petition for legal separation or a petition for dissolution legally operate the same way. The separation date in either petition can be designated as the petition's filing date or the physical separation date. Either the date the parties physically separated by residing in different houses or some other defining moment, such as, sleeping in different bedrooms or a verbal discussion signifying the marriage was over.

Both petitions separate property and debts and designate the use of property, such as, who lives in the family home or who gets to drive which car. Either petition also allows for a parenting plan establishing a residential reschedule or legal custody as well as designating child support and/or spousal maintenance (alimony).

This is part one of a two part series of filing for legal separation versus filing for divorce. The next post will discuss the difference between filing for legal separation and divorce and why filing for divorce does not necessarily signify the end of the marriage...as unlikely as that may seem.

AKIONA LAW, PLLC makes the information and materials on this blog available for general informational purposes only. The information provided is not intended to be legal advice. See DISCLAIMER.

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