How is legal separation different from divorce?

On behalf of Stange Law Firm, PC posted in Legal Separation on Friday, March 27, 2015.

The primary difference between legal separation and divorce is that a couple remains married in the state of a legal divorce. Other than that, legal separation and divorce are very similar, and couples who go through legal separation proceedings will have court-mandated custody rights, visitation rights, and others. Because legal separation allows couples to gain some experience as to how divorced life would be for them, it is often used in instances when a married couple are unsure about their relationship.

Divorce is a very serious process with a degree of finality to it. Obviously you can always remarry your spouse even after a divorce, but going through all of the complex legalities of divorce, and then making the transition back to married life again is a hassle to say the least. This is why most couples who believe that there is still hope for their relationship opt for legal separation instead of divorce. You can find more in-depth information about different forms of separation in this article.

The crucial part of legal separation is that even though the couple remains married, properties and debts can still be considered personal property. Essentially, legal separation allows you to have greater insight into what your life would be like after a divorce, and then makes it easier to transition from there. If you find that single life is actually suiting you well, then you can move forward with divorce proceedings and many of the factors detailed in your separation agreement will hold through the divorce. If you decide that your marriage is worth saving, you can fairly easily transition back into married life.

Divorce is not for everybody, and if you or your spouse are pondering divorce, it can be difficult to tell if it’s the right decision. A legal separation can help you make a better decision about what is best for you. Fortunately for Missouri residents, there are no separation requirements in our state, so there is nothing stopping you from filing for legal separation.

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