We have been getting a lot of calls from people who want to file for legal separation so I felt another article about legal separation was warranted.
First let me answer the first question we get about legal separation which is, “Do you guys (us) do Legal Separation cases?”.
The answer is, “Yes we do Legal Separation Cases”
But… Whenever someone calls us with legal separation questions, I always make sure to find out why they are thinking about filing for legal separation instead of divorce.
I wrote a great article about the differences between legal separation and divorce (click on that link to read it) and I usually talk people out of filing for legal separation.
Here is why.
There are only a few reasons why people should file for legal separation. The first being religious. Some people’s religion prohibits or frowns upon divorce. Another reason is for medical reasons. If you get divorced your spouse is not longer a dependent and can no longer be on your healthcare. Where a illness prevents them from getting their own insurance and you don’t plan on remarrying, this might be a good option.
Of all the calls we get for legal separation, only one really was a candidate for legal separation and had real reasons for the legal separati0n vs divorce.
Most of the people who have called for legal separation think it is better to first legally separate before filing for divorce. Sometimes, they think doing the legal separation is faster, but it is not.
These folks have also said that they were later planning on divorcing after filing the legal separation.
Here is the problem with that.
The paperwork for divorce and separation are the same. There is just one box that is checked differently. If you go through the entire legal separation process and the judgment is approved and finalized and later you want to file for divorce, you will have to file an entirely new case.
You can’t just change a legal separation filing into divorce. You would have to prepare a brand new divorce case, fill out all the same paperwork and pay the filing fees again.
We are a license and bonded legal document preparation firm that specializes in divorce (and legal separation). Please give us a call for more information.