Legal Separation

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Definition of 'Legal Separation'

Legal separation is a legal process that allows married couples to live apart from each other while remaining legally married. It is a less drastic alternative to divorce, and it can be a good option for couples who want to end their marriage but are not yet ready to go through the process of divorce.

There are a few key differences between legal separation and divorce. First, legal separation does not end the marriage. This means that the couple will still be considered married for legal purposes, such as taxes and property ownership. Second, legal separation does not automatically terminate spousal support or child support payments. These issues will need to be addressed in a separate agreement between the couple.

Third, legal separation does not allow either spouse to remarry. This is because the couple is still legally married, even though they are living apart. If either spouse wants to remarry, they will need to first get a divorce.

There are a few advantages to legal separation over divorce. First, it is a less expensive and less time-consuming process. Second, it can be a less emotionally stressful process, as the couple does not have to go through the same legal and emotional turmoil as they would in a divorce.

However, there are also some disadvantages to legal separation. First, it can be more difficult to get a legal separation than it is to get a divorce. This is because the couple will need to agree on all of the terms of the separation, including child support, spousal support, and property division. Second, legal separation does not provide the same level of legal protection as divorce. For example, if one spouse dies, the other spouse will not automatically inherit their property.

Ultimately, the decision of whether to pursue legal separation or divorce is a personal one. There is no right or wrong answer, and the best decision for one couple may not be the best decision for another. If you are considering legal separation, it is important to speak to an attorney to learn more about your options and to get help in making the best decision for your situation.

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