Reasons to Consider a Legal Separation Over a Divorce

By The Law Offices of Ronald K. Stitch|April 13, 2022

When you and your spouse can no longer get along and feel it’s best to separate, you might assume that getting a divorce is the only legal option.

That’s not necessarily the case. You may not be ready to get a divorce yet for various reasons. If so, you can get a legal separation instead in California.

A legal separation is similar to a divorce. Spouses legally separate from each other must make decisions regarding the division of property, child support, child custody, and visitation rights. However, in the eyes of the law, even after getting a legal separation, they remain officially married.

There is no universally correct choice for all couples regarding whether legal separation or divorce is the superior option when two spouses are struggling to maintain a healthy marriage. It’s best to ask yourself specific essential questions about your current plans when deciding whether to get a divorce or a legal separation. That said, if the idea of getting a legal separation interests you at all, the following are some reasons you may consider it:

Keeping Certain Benefits

Being married often involves enjoying certain practical benefits, particularly regarding taxes and healthcare. If you wish to keep those benefits, you can get a legal separation instead of a divorce.

Adhering to Religious Beliefs

Are you in an unsustainable marriage but don’t wish to get a divorce because doing so would violate certain cultural or religious beliefs? If so, a legal separation is another option to consider. By getting a legal separation instead of a divorce, you can stay officially married, ensuring that you have not betrayed what may be sincerely held religious values.

Leaving Room to Return

The decision to get a divorce is a very challenging one. Although there are certain instances when two spouses know that they are ready for their marriage to end, in many cases, spouses are unsure if they are prepared to take such a final step.

Legal separation is often an ideal solution for such couples. When they get a legal separation, they can try living apart as a sort of experiment to get a clearer sense of what divorce would be like without severing the relationship entirely. While it’s true that some couples get divorced only to remarry later, the process of marrying someone again after getting a divorce is much more complex than the process of resuming a relationship after a legal separation.

That said, you also need to consider the limitations of this option. For example, if you only get a legal separation, you can’t marry someone else until you finalize a divorce.

Regardless, if you choose to get a legal separation instead of a divorce, you will still need a lawyer to walk you through every step. At the Law Offices of Ronald K. Stitch, our Simi Valley legal separation attorney is on hand to offer the assistance you need. Contact our offices online or call us at 818-707-0202 for more information.

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