What’s the Difference Between Legal Separation & Divorce?

couple upset with each other

When a couple no longer wants to be together, they will typically get a divorce. However, if you want to separate but not necessarily get divorced, you may wonder if you have other options. Fortunately, you very well might. Please continue reading and reach out to our knowledgeable Los Angeles legal separation attorneys to learn more about the difference between legal separation and divorce and whether this may be the right move for you. Here are some of the questions you may have:

What is the benefit of choosing legal separation over divorce in California?

Legal separation is a means for couples to split up without technically getting divorced. Though this may not make sense at first, there are actually various reasons why a couple would choose legal separation over divorce. The two most common reasons for choosing legal separation, however, are economic and religious reasons. As you may know, many religions prohibit divorce. However, rather obviously, just because divorce is prohibited doesn’t mean that every couple will remain in love and want to spend the rest of their lives together. If your religion prohibits divorce, a legal separation may be a viable alternative, wherein you can end your relationship without having to get officially divorced.

As for economic reasons, as you may know, many couples share health care plans. When they get divorced, however, one spouse will likely no longer be a part of that healthcare plan. For many people, this can be a very serious issue, and, in some cases, can even be a life-or-death situation. For this reason, sometimes couples will choose to legally separate instead of getting divorced. Legally separating instead of getting divorced can also come with certain tax benefits.

How do I request a legal separation in California?

To get a legal separation in the state of California, you should first hire a lawyer who can inform you of your options and walk you through the process. Your attorney will get a court order that details you and your spouse’s rights once the separation is enforced, as well as the property each of you may be entitled to. If you have children, you will also have to sort out child custody and child support terms. You may also get an alimony agreement as well. With many legal separation cases, these terms can be worked out between spouses outside of court, but if you can’t agree upon them with your spouse, you’ll likely have to enter litigation. Our team can fight for your best interests.

If you have any questions about legal separation in the state of California, please don’t hesitate to pick up the phone and give us a call or contact us online today.

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