What Is Legal Separation?

When facing difficult issues in marriage such as domestic violence or infidelity, it is common to consider divorce. However, some people do not wish to pursue divorce on moral grounds, or because they need time to work on some issues that may allow a return to the marriage.

In Michigan, you have the option of pursuing a legal separation. The process requires you to divide your assets and obligations and resolve issues relating to your children in a legally binding agreement or court order.

Here at Kraayeveld Law Offices, P.C., our lawyers have worked with many clients who wish to remain married but live separately. Our experienced attorneys can advise you on how to negotiate and obtain legal separation, support and parenting time orders.

We approach each legal separation case with compassion and a strong commitment to advocacy. In this difficult time of transition, you deserve to be heard and to have your interests protected.

Call Kraayeveld Law Offices, P.C., in Grand Rapids at 616-426-9644 for a confidential consultation.

The Advantages And Disadvantages Of Pursuing A Legal Separation

With a legal separation order, a couple can make important binding decisions about child custody and visitation, property division and spousal support just as would occur in a divorce but without ending the marriage.

For people who wish to stay married but maintain separate living arrangements for any of a variety of reasons, legal separation can be an important legal tool. Many people choose legal separation for:

  • Moral and religious grounds
  • Health insurance coverage: if you divorce, you are likely to lose coverage under your spouse's health care insurance
  • Social Security coverage: generally, a couple must have been married for at least 10 years in order for a nonworking spouse to qualify for Social Security under the working spouse's benefits
  • Optimism: many couples remain married because they hope to work out their differences while separating their legal and financial affairs

While these are important reasons people choose not to end a marriage, there are also important reasons to consider ending your marriage. If you decide to remarry in the future, for example, you will still have to pursue a divorce first, which is an additional expense. A divorce also brings about important emotional and social changes in your life, allowing you to leave the past behind and move forward.

Legal separation is one of several options for families in transition. Make sure you are choosing what is best for you and that your interests are protected. Contact an experienced attorney with the experience and knowledge to help you understand your legal options.

Contact our office in Grand Rapids, Michigan, for a confidential consultation about legal separation.