There is more than one way to achieve marital dissolution in California. Although divorce is most common, many couples choose legal separation instead. Legal separation can have several advantages over divorce. To find out if this is a viable option for you, consult with a Palo Alto legal separation lawyer at the Schoenberg Family Law Group, P.C.
Our family law attorneys have represented individuals and families throughout California for more than 35 years. We have in-depth knowledge and information about the pros and cons of divorce vs. legal separation to help with your case. Our lawyers will work diligently on your behalf to make sure the choice you make will achieve optimal results.
What are the Benefits of a Legal Separation in Palo Alto?
When a couple gets divorced, the law views the couple as no longer married. With a legal separation, however, the couple remains married on paper. Although legally the marriage is still valid, the legally separated couple will live apart, with each person leading a separate life.
Divorce and legal separation both have advantages and disadvantages. Some of the advantages of legal separation include:
- Since the couple stays married on paper, both people can continue to benefit from their marital status for insurance purposes, tax reasons and/or employment benefits.
- If you do not currently meet California’s residency requirements for a divorce – living in the state for at least six months and the county for at least three months – you can still get a legal separation to live your own life away from your estranged spouse.
- It gives you and your spouse time to decide whether to get divorced, if this is in your future. If you decide to stay together, you will not have to get remarried, since your marriage was never dissolved in the eyes of the law.
- If your religion disapproves of divorce, legal separation is a solution that can allow you to live and act as someone who is single without going against your beliefs by getting a divorce.
Some states require couples to complete a period of separation before getting a divorce. This is not a requirement, however, in the State of California. These are only a few of the reasons a married couple in Palo Alto might choose legal separation over divorce. You and your spouse can sit down with a lawyer to review your case and weigh the pros and cons of legal separation before you decide.
What is the Legal Separation Process?
Some of the ways legal separation is similar to divorce are the principal matters that must be determined: child custody, child support, property division and alimony. First, you or your spouse will fill out and file the paperwork necessary to start a legal separation, along with paying a filing fee. It does not matter which one of you files the paperwork first.
Then, you will have the opportunity to work with your spouse to decide the terms of your legal separation. You will need to arrange property and debt division, as well as create a parenting plan if you share children. If you and your spouse cannot compromise and reach a settlement agreement, however, the legal separation case will go before a judge.
We are Highly Experienced Legal Separation Lawyers in Palo Alto
If you believe legal separation is right for you, discuss your case with an attorney. At the Schoenberg Family Law Group, P.C., our attorneys specialize in all matters of divorce and family law. We can help you successfully navigate a legal separation, protecting your rights and welfare every step of the way.
Discuss all the ways we can help you and your family with a legal separation today. Please contact us online or call (669) 230-1304 for an initial consultation.