Legal separation is a complex process that starts the process of dissolving a legal relationship. Legal separation is the first stage of a divorce. Every couple that wants to start the divorce process must understand what legal separation is and what it means for them. There are multiple details and arguments that are involved in the legal separation process. Ideally, you should create a legal separation plan with your legal separation attorney in order to get all the specifics right. This process is very important if you want to resolve differences and find a solution to your personal relationship status.
The types of legal separation
Legal separation occurs when a couple decides to separate. This is essentially the first step towards the final divorce decision. When a couple decides to take a break, there are two final steps. The couple can either take a short or long break from each other, in order to think about the practical or personal aspects of the relationship, or they can decide to start the entire legal separation process and dissolve the marriage through divorce. It’s important to understand what these choices mean for you and how you can take advantage of these possibilities. Simply put, you’ll have to talk to your legal separation lawyer and see which is better for you. Every case is different, so you must decide carefully which is ideal for you.
Harmony and separation
Separation is not always a negative aspect of a relationship. Separation can often help preserve the harmony of the relationship, household or family. For instance, if a spouse or a partner is involved in illegal or nefarious activity, the best choice for the couple is to separate temporarily. In these cases, leaving the house can be the best choice and can help the couple long term. The separation process can also help protect the rights of each spouse or partner. It provides a way to communicate and discuss important aspects that can help the relationship survive. The most important aspects of this situation are the finances, the children and the future of the relationship. Also, legal matters must be discussed, together with your legal separation lawyer. Keep in mind that each state has special requirements for the legal separation process – talk to your legal separation attorney if you are not sure and want more information about this topic.
The custody of children
The most sensitive aspect of legal separation is children. Custody is by far the most delicate process during any type of legal separation. Usually, both spouses struggle to get custody and the entire process is very difficult and time-consuming. This is especially true if the couple lives as a family, in the same house. Custody of the children is important for every parent that wants the best for his or her children – and legal advice is extremely important in these cases. The separation process becomes much more complex, both for the parents and the children involved. Both parents must create their own schedules to spend time with their children, to be able to live a fruitful, active life, and to help their children. Also, it’s important to determine the spouse that remains at the matrimonial house, and who will retain the primary care of children. All these aspects must be decided during the legal separation process.
Similar to custody, visitation is an especially important aspect of legal separation. If the separation is for a longer period, typically longer than a month, a parent may ask to receive visitation rights. Simply put, the parent who remains at home with the children must allow the other parent to visit the children. Usually, the person who stays with the children will spend time with them during the weekdays, while the other parent during the weekends. Obviously, this decision must also be enforced by a court, if there’s a decision involved. This aspect can be positive for a child – it means spending time away from home, frequent travel to fun destinations and new activities, far from the couple’s relationship problems. The visitation schedule must ensure that the children are not affected – it must respect school or work hours and it must not interfere with other activities. Talk to your legal separation attorney to learn more about the visitation rights and what you can ask for from the other parent.
Spousal support during the separation process
In special cases, a legal separation may take a long time. During this time, the aspect of spousal support can be discussed. This issue can be carried over into the divorce. Simply put, one spouse may be forced to provides spousal support during the entire legal proceedings and after the divorce decision is finalized. If the spouses do not reach a common agreement, the services of a legal separation lawyer may be needed. He or she will determine how one person can provide temporary assistance to another one. This is particularly important if a person is leaving the house and will need extra funds to pay rent or find decent accommodation. If there is no room for negotiation, a court decision can solve these issues.
The role of a lawyer in the legal separation process
Legal separation issues very complex and some couples may simply be overwhelmed by them. There are many aspects to solve, a lot of negotiation to do and important matters to pay attention to. There are also children, financial aspects and other important details. You will obviously need help from a qualified legal professional. This is especially true if there are issues related to living conditions. For instance, your lawyer will help if there are issues related to living in a separate house or if you want special visitation rights. Also, the time awarded to each parent, the child support and the alimony payments must be carefully discussed with your lawyer. You may get a better deal in the long run. Everything helps, and having a good lawyer is essential in this process.