Divorce and legal separation are two legal processes that can be confusing for many people. While both involve the separation of a couple, there are some key differences between the two. In this blog post, we will explore the differences between divorce and legal separation and provide some useful tips for those who are considering either option.
What is Divorce?
Divorce is the legal process of ending a marriage. When a couple decides to get divorced, they must file a petition with the court and go through a legal process to divide their assets and liabilities, determine child custody and support, and establish spousal support. Once the divorce is finalized, the couple is legally divorced and can marry other people if they choose to do so.
What is Legal Separation?
Legal separation is similar to divorce in that it involves the separation of a couple. However, legal separation does not end the marriage. Instead, it is a legal process that allows a couple to live apart while remaining legally married. During a legal separation, the couple can still divide their assets and liabilities, determine child custody and support, and establish spousal support.
Key Differences Between Divorce and Legal Separation
- Status: Divorce ends the marriage, while legal separation allows the couple to remain legally married.
- Remarriage: After a divorce is finalized, the couple can remarry. After a legal separation, the couple cannot remarry unless they get divorced.
- Benefits: A couple who is legally separated may still be able to receive certain benefits, such as health insurance, that they would lose if they got divorced.
- Time: Legal separation can be a faster process than divorce because it does not require the same level of legal proceedings.
- Reconciliation: Legal separation allows for the possibility of reconciliation, while divorce does not.
Tips for Choosing Between Divorce and Legal Separation
- Consider your goals: If you are sure that you want to end your marriage, divorce may be the best option. If you are unsure and want to leave the possibility of reconciliation open, legal separation may be a better choice.
- Talk to a lawyer: A lawyer can help you understand the legal process and determine which option is best for your situation.
- Think about your financial situation: Divorce can be more expensive than legal separation, so it is important to consider your financial situation before making a decision.
Divorce and legal separation can both be difficult processes to navigate, but understanding the differences between the two can help you make the right decision for your situation.
If you are considering divorce or legal separation, it is important to talk to a lawyer who can guide you through the process. At H. Benjamin Perez & Associates, P.C., we have years of experience helping clients with divorce and legal separation cases. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.