While the terms are often used interchangeably, legal separation and divorce do own notable differences. In simple terms, legal separation allows couples to remain married, but operate independently, living in two separate homes. Divorce, on the other hand, revokes a marriage and reverts former partners to single status in the eyes of the government.
People choose legal separation instead of divorce for a variety of reasons – the most common being a chance to test the waters and see if their marriage is beyond repair. Often times, a legal separation acts as a trial period for couples to hash out their issues from a healthy distance.
If you’re interested in legal separation, Klok Law can help. Get in touch with our team and we’ll assist you with the paperwork and logistics of committing to a legal separation. With our help, you and your spouse can commit to the next step in the process without worrying yourselves with the legal legwork.
Why legal separation?
Beyond its usage as a trial period, legal separation also provides monetary and lifestyle benefits that are often forfeited in divorce. For example, you may be able to retain joint medical benefits, retirement plans and savings accounts in the event of a legal separation. However, a divorce will waive your right to maintain them.
Additionally, depending on your religion, legal separation may offer better recourse than divorce. If your faith does not coincide with the tenets of divorce, legal separation could offer a more acceptable form of break-up.
Furthermore, in South Carolina, you have to live separate and apart for one year prior to obtaining a divorce if you are not divorcing for “cause”. If you intend to divorce and don’t have “cause”, you and your spouse may legally separate and outline how you will interact during the separation period.
No matter why you’re seeking legal separation, Klok Law is at your service. Our team is knowledgeable in the field of family law, and well prepared to make your separation as seamless as possible.
How do I organize a legal separation?
Like a divorce, a legal separation requires a series of declarations and forms that state your irreconcilable differences or reasoning for dissolution.
If children are involved, a legal separation requires family planning to outline custody and visiting rights of parents. Understandably, children should always be the first priority in a legal separation. Like a divorce, there needs to be rules, guidance and a firm plan of action in place to make sure all children are accommodated and cared for.
Additionally, things such as debt and property division need to be hashed out during the legal process. Will one of you be keeping the house while the other moves out? Will you both be moving to new locations? Do you have a timeline in mind? It’s important to ask these sorts of questions as the legal process develops.
Call Klok Law for Legal Separation
If you’re committed to a legal separation and you’re searching for legal counsel, Klok Law is your answer. We’ve helped helped many couples through their legal processes, and we’re committed to helping you.
Give us a call or reach out to via e-mail. We’re one of Charleston County’s top legal firms, and we’re happy to help you with any issues you might have.