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What is the Difference Between Divorce and Legal Separation?

Making a decision whether you should get a divorce or legally separate will depend entirely on your needs and goals. There are many reasons why some spouses might choose to legally separate, so it is crucial to examine your own situation and fully understand the implications each choice can potentially have on your future.

Although legal separation and divorce share many similarities, one of the greatest differences between them is that spouses who legally separate cannot marry someone new. To remarry, you must divorce your spouse. As such, legal separation is ideal for spouses who are unsure of ending their marriage, but have an interest in living separate lives.

Other Major Differences

In some cases, spouses hope to repair their marriage and believe in the possibility of reconciliation, which is why they may opt for legal separation. However, this is not the only reason why spouses choose to legally separate.

Below are some of the benefits of legally separating, which may factor into your decision:

  • When spouses legally separate, the spouse who pays spousal support may claim these payments as a deduction when filing taxes if it is part of the legal separation agreement.
  • If you have concerns about health insurance coverage, you can remain under your spouse’s health insurance plan when you legally separate.
  • Some families have religious objections to divorce. However, legal separation provides a loophole to this predicament by allowing spouses to remain married while leading separate lives.
  • If you ultimately choose to get divorced, the process will likely go much faster since you will have already addressed issues such as property division, spousal support, and child custody.

If you are unsure which option is best for you, consult with an experienced family law attorney who can advise you on your options and how they may impact you.

Reach Out to a Knowledgeable Family Law Attorney to Discuss the Details of Your Case!

If you are experiencing difficulties with your marriage and you are considering legal separation or divorce, you will need a skilled family law attorney to advise and represent you as you move forward with your case. At the Law Offices of Frank E. Mann, P.C., our family law attorney has more than 33 years of helping families navigate the most complex legal matters. Our law firm also offers affordable fees and payment plans for your convenience and peace of mind.

Do not hesitate to reach out to us today. Call us at (713) 903-8112 to request a free initial case evaluation with our knowledgeable divorce attorney to discuss your legal options.