When Should I Consider Legal Separation Instead of Divorce?

Wheaton family law attorney for legal separationIf you and your spouse are having relationship problems, but you are not ready to deal with the challenges and finality that come with a divorce, you might want to consider getting a legal separation. A legal separation can enable you to do many of the same things you can do through divorce, such as determining parental responsibilities, parenting time, temporary spousal support, and child support. However, you will remain legally married to your spouse, and this can provide a number of advantages.

6 Reasons to Get Separated Instead of Divorced

While divorce might seem like the most obvious option for a failing marriage, you may not wish to legally dissolve your marriage. You might choose to pursue a legal separation for one or more of the following reasons:

  1. Financial Concerns—There are many financial benefits to getting a legal separation from your spouse, including:

  • Continuing to intermingle your finances, ensuring that you both have more liquid assets available
  • Waiting long enough to meet the 10-year requirement that will allow one spouse to receive Social Security benefits based on the other spouse’s income and work history
  • Taking advantage of tax benefits by still being able to file joint tax returns as a married couple
  • Keeping military benefits
  1. Health Insurance—Insurance coverage can be one of the biggest expenses for a person. If getting a divorce might put one spouse’s health insurance at risk because they are included in their partner’s coverage, you might want to consider a separation. This will allow both spouses to remain on one spouse’s insurance plan while you are legally married.

  2. Difficult Living Arrangements—In some cases, spouses may still love each other and want to be committed to their family, but they are having trouble living together. A person may need more than a little “alone time;” sometimes, they want to have an entire home to themselves. A separation maintains the benefits and loyalty inherent in marriage without making living together an expectation or requirement.

  3. Staying Together for the Family—Many people think the “ugliness” of a divorce could scar a family unit. By getting legally separated, you and your spouse might be able to spare your children some of the adverse effects of divorce while maintaining a relationship as parents and ensuring your children’s needs will be met.

  4. Not Ready for Divorce—You may not be sure if divorce is the right choice for you and your spouse. A separation could help you test the waters and see if being away from one another is right for you or whether you want to attempt to save your marriage.

  5. Religion—Some religions make it difficult to get a divorce, or they may forbid divorce altogether. A legal separation may allow you to end your relationship with your spouse while avoiding any religious concerns that may come with divorce.

Contact a Wheaton Legal Separation Lawyer

Divorce is not your only option if you are struggling in your marriage. You might want to consider getting a legal separation. The knowledgeable lawyers at Andrew Cores Family Law Group will discuss your options with you and help you figure out the best course of action for your particular circumstances. Call a DuPage County family law attorney at 630-871-1002 for a free consultation.

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=075000050HPt%2E+IV&ActID=2086&ChapterID=59&SeqStart=3800000&SeqEnd=5300000

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jefflanders/2012/01/10/legal-separation-or-divorce-which-is-better-financially/#5bb1990a5ccf

https://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/01/fashion/01Undivorced.html

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