What is a Legal Separation?
Legal Separation is the act of living apart from one’s spouse for a period of time but still legally married.
Legal separation as opposed to divorce is a more appropriate option for people who just want to live separately from their spouses, and it has several advantages over divorce. One of the main advantages is that in some cases, this type of separation may allow people to keep their property from getting split up with their former partner. This way, they are not completely giving up any rights to marital assets.
Who can File?
The courts apply principles that are not biased towards any party when applying for legal separation. In New York, either the spouses or their Divorce Lawyers can file for legal separation.
Legal separation does not mean you are legally divorced. You can file for a legal separation for many reasons, including to live separately from your spouse, to get protection against domestic violence, or to get temporary child custody during a divorce.
What are the Benefits of Filing a Legal Separation?
The benefits of filing for a legal separation include:
-You can protect yourself and your children if there is domestic violence.
-It gives you more time to figure out what you want without feeling pressured by the other spouse.
-You are able to make decisions about property and debts without the other person’s input or approval.
-It can help you get temporary child custody during divorce proceedings.
What is the cost?
Legal separation is the more economical option when couples have the ability to work out an agreement on their own, but this option is not available to everyone.
The most significant cost in a divorce or legal separation is attorney fees and court fees.
If you are considering filing for a legal separation instead of a divorce, please contact an attorney who specializes in family law to discuss your rights and obligations under the NY law.